Friday 30th September
… on the last day of September – what was that all about? Does anyone play the game any more? Are we history? Discuss!
Today we made good progress in a good amount of sunshine – but it was a two fleece day for me. Through Blisworth tunnel with ease and onto the lock mooring above the top lock at Stoke Bruerne as one boat came up and another joined us for the trip down the flight. After a few minutes of some of the silliest questions I have ever been asked (outside of infants class) about canal boating I offered four tourists a ride down through the first lock. “What time does the trip boat go?” as they were looking at it. “I dont know” I replied. “Why not” came the response. “Because we have just arrived here. ”Arn’t you a trip boat too?” “No, it’s my home!” “Can you take us for a trip?” “No, I’ve my own journey to get on with and we wouldn’t be insured!” “Why are you holding that rope?” “To stop my boat floating away” “Why are you just stopped here?” I’m waiting to go into that lock but it’s occupied at present” “How many bedrooms?” led onto “What freight do you carry! Perhaps I should have said “Coal – we keep it in the bath!” (Slap wrist) The offer of a ride in the front well deck, down through the top lolck was met with “ but how will we get back?” The response “It’s about a 1 minute walk” was met with real surprise. They got on, had their trip through the lock and got off again and just left – no thankyous. Obviously rude as well as daft!
We shared the whole flight with a lads week hire boat from Wyvern Shipping – what an interesting bunch. The steerer was a New Zealander over for 3 months and the reason for the trip. The old fella who stayed within the cabin for the whole flight has apparently just ordered a brand new narrowboat – I assume he’s just going to live on it in one location as he wasn’t keen on assisting with the locks. The other two worked hard and we got down the SB flight in good time passing a few other boats on their way up.
Below the flight we came across a fallen tree that was right opposite a moored boat – typical. The combination of the two caused a severe navigation restriction. Shortly after that we saw a whole ‘gaggle?’ of pheasants who were not sure what to do about this approaching blue steel monster and so just ran along the towpath in front of us.
Today has been another Kingfisher day – I think we’ve seen more this year than ever before. Supper in the Black Horse at Linford – not cheap but very good quality.