Sunday, 8 May 2011


Well the Skipper’s excelled himself over the last two days.... We have actually covered twenty three miles!
Bless him... I didn’t know he had it in him!
Though it was wonderful being on the River Trent again, even just tied up, I was glad that on Friday morning he decided to get organised and we were on our way from Trent Bridge.
I have to be honest; I was so glad to see the last of that blooming cricket stadium. Though he only went the once I was forever anxious that he was going to be there every day and we were going to have to stay in the one place for a week or more.... Well you know how long those silly matches go on for.
But we left nice and early .....well nine o’clock-ish anyway.... on Friday morning. Unfortunately there wasn’t much Sun but there was a warm southerly wind up my tail and I felt very good. I know the Skipper was happy too, as he was singing with great gusto Sir Joseph Porter’s song in ‘HMS Pinafore’ to my perfect engine beat.... Just about the right speed it was!

A Greylag family... with three Parents?

The locks on the river are all much larger now and when we arrived at the first one, Holme Lock, the skipper was pleased to discover that from now on down the river all the locks are manned by lock keepers and work on VHF channel 74. So he got his set out so he could hear all the chatter and announce our arrival at all the locks.

Great Crested Grebe

Quite a party of us in Hazelford Lock

Another narrow boat locked with us at Holme called ‘Wings and Roots’. It was skippered by a New Zealand lady called Janice and actually she was a perfect travelling companion for us as she went at the same speed and consequently stayed in close consort with us all the way to Newark.
I have to say, this is something that me and the Skipper do see eye to eye about (big faint eh?) the speed we travel I mean .... At least when I can get him to move at all that is! So long as I’m actually moving I have no interest in going fast at all, as befits a lady of my age I think.
I can go faster than any of them if I want to, but I see no point. These youngsters with their high revving oriental engines are on the wrong race track as far as I’m concerned and should be on the road instead! I’m thankful that the Skipper feels the same. He likes to be able to see what is going on all around as he is going along.... He’s a real dawdler with his binoculars!
In our two day passage there was quite a bit of traffic going our way but we were both happy to see them rush past and it was obvious that ‘Wings and Roots’, with the New Zealand flag bravely fluttering, was exactly the same.
We tied up on Friday afternoon at the visitor moorings just before Gunthorpe Lock, right outside the popular ‘Unicorn Hotel’. In the evening the Skipper went ashore for a pint... He deserved it bless him. He’d done very well.... for him! It was such a beautiful warm night that people were spilling out of the front door of the pub onto the road and into the gardens. It was what summer’s all about really.

Greens and reflections

Yesterday was the same peaceful travelling, though it soon began to rain after we’d left the mooring. But ‘Wings and Roots’ and us were happy to dally along as all the others rushed by. The river though wide now was very snaking in this part of the country and there were lots of large weirs that were trying their hardest to drag me over. There was lots of wildlife around; more than usual..... Great Crested Grebes that dived for food and stayed under water for so long. There were Black Cormorants too with their long necks and a white circular patch beneath their wings.
But eventually the Sun came out again, just before we arrived at Newark and here we said goodbye to our travelling companion as she went into the Kings Marina, where she lives.
Then the Skipper and I performed a smart turnabout in the river adjacent to the Town moorings and came alongside the high quayside, stemming the flow of the river, which was quite fast at this point.
And here we are now safe and sound for the day but I think he wants to move on tomorrow...
And you know my feelings about that!

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