Sunday, June 29, 2008

Day 1 of the summer tour - an eventful start

At 9 am as planned we set off for the winding hole with Geoff on Lady Elgar in the lead. At 9 am and 30 seconds Geoff announced that his propellor was weeded up. Our bit of the Slough arm is like the sargasso sea at present - gin clear and full of fish but choked with blanket weed. My prop wasn't too good either but Herbie was making a bit of progress so we overtook Geoff while he visited his weedhatch and we set off for the winding hole.

At the next bridge we visited Herbie's weedhatch and removed the customary blue plastic bag and several handfuls of the weed before an otherwise uneventful trip to the winding hole to turn. When we were nearly back we came across Lady Elgar stationary. Apparently Geoff had given up after no less than 7 weedhatch events. Being kind souls we offered to tow him back to his moorings ( he had only travelled about 200 yards!).

Towing a big boat backwards isn't all that easy it seems, and at first I thought she would never move. With many engine revs and much black smoke she eventually budged with the help of of Geoff's boat pole and we inched back slowly to his spot. On reaching it we mercilessly cast him adrift and went on our way while he poled himself back to the bank.

After that it was plain sailing really. Out of the Slough Arm and into the clear water of the Grand Union on down to Tescos at Bulls Bridge where we did a big stock up of victuals for the trip. By now we were quite a bit later than planned so when we moved on to Hanwell we moored at the top of the locks and walked down to the Fox at the bottom lock so as to be in time for Sunday lunch.

We were too late! Except that Kath smiled at the waitress and they served us a nice Sunday roast even though it was half an hour after they are supposed to have stopped. Then, rather too full, we walked back to the boat and spent a hard hour and a half bringing her down through the six locks at Hanwell. Its a really nice setting for a flight of locks but they aren't half heavy. I was knackered by the time we moored up at the bottom.

After a rest we returned to the Fox where a lot of men were watching a football match on the telly. I couldn't hear the sound, but a team called Ger was playing a team called Spn. The men in the pub clearly didn't like Ger and wanted Spn to win which they did.

The Spn team seemd to be composed of racing drivers. I spotted Senna (I thought he was dead) and Alonso amongst them. They to spent most of the match nearly scoring goals. The Ger team seemed to be gymnasts as their tactic seemed to be to get into the other sides penalty area and then execute a foward roll. The referee (not a proper one because he had a blue shirt instead of the proper black one) seemed to like the forward rolls as he kept awarding yellow cards to Ger.

At the end, the Ger players seemed fed up, but the Spn team seemed pleased as they had been given a milk churn with ribbons on. Funny game, football.

1 comment:

saltysplash said...

Hi folks, great pic. Thanks for the tow. We are gonna try and wind again tomorrow even if we have to pole her all the way to the bridge hole. Have a great trip and look forward to reading the blog. Glad Kath got the sunday dinner