Here I am at Fazeley, up to me neck in abrasive paper and paint. Kath has abandoned me to go and look after Grace this week while her mum is busy working all hours providing champagne breakfasts for the hooray Henrys at Ascot.
I've got a nice mooring with a low bank edge and a clean paved surface to get the gunnels painted, and in just over twenty four hours I've done it. Hooray, they'll look good until they get scratched in the next lock.
Right now I'm praying that it won't rain as the paint is still wet, but it's getting gloomier by the minute. I also repainted the cants on the back deck and the white flash on the starboard bow. What a good boy am I. However I fear that might be my lot as the forecast doesn't look too good for the next couple of days.
On Sunday night we found a beautiful spot in the sticks just a few minutes from Alvecote. The birds were singing and banks were bursting with new growth. Actually the amount of bird song as been notable on this trip, especially blackbirds and thrushes. Thrushes are getting a bit rare these days but on this we've seen quite a few. I wonder if they are making a come back.
As we were about to set off on Monday morning we heard the Pop Pop of a Russell Newbery coming down the canal, and who should it be but our old friend Leon on the Old Bovine. Leon has transformed his good but nothing outstanding boat into a work of wonder. He has had it stretched twice, so now it it 70ft long, totally repainted it inside and out in traditional fashion, replace the engine etc. it's a modernist boat but every time we see it it looks more like an old working boat. His latest trick has been to cut a groove along the hull just a couple of inches below the gunnel top , so the gunnels look like they have wooden planks on top. It works!
Now just to show I haven't been fibbing, some photos of lush countryside and gleaming paintwork.