Thursday, May 26, 2016

Three quick visits with sausages, lemony cake and orangey beer

We popped in at Cropredy on Tuesday to get our first look at Herbie in her new berth.  The staff had moved her to the pontoon in our absence.  Here she is in her new home.h at cropr

We can’t believe our luck at getting this spot. we’re one of the very few boats in the marina to have an open view on one side – in our case, across the fields towards the village.  We can get the car to within a few feet of the boat for loading and unloading, and just across the path we have a grassy area to sit out alongside the canal.  Not quite as grand as our grassy knoll at Crick but still pretty good.

Arriving half an hour before sundown we quickly grabbed our deck chairs and sat by the canal with a can of beer to sample the atmosphere.  Swifts were doing their low level swoops along the canal and the nearby hawthorns were in full bloom.  Out of the blue a man wandered down the row of boats to greet us and invited us over to his BBQ for a sausage.  How nice is that?  Already we have two new friends, Bob and Kate after only a few minutes.

We slept on board, and looking out of the window before turning in we could see bats circling about near the boat. Next morning we had to get away to drive to Cambridge, but we had time as we were packing up to listen to a skylark over the field next to us.  We’re going to like it here.

Realising that our route to Cambridge would take us close to Whilton and reading that Adam and Adrian were waiting to take Briar Rose up the locks, we rang them the previous evening to say we might call in. (Ooh , I realise now that Rick will be reading this and complaining that we should have called in on him too.  Well Rick, we haven’t seen Adam and Adrian for ages, and we saw you a couple of weeks ago. Smile  ) Adam (bless him) texted early on Wednesday to say he had just baked a cake to share with us.  The drive from Cropredy to Whilton is only just over half an hour, or by boat, about three or four days at our pace!

A&A didn’t have to wait in specially for us because the CRT guys up the flight were still struggling to refit a broken lock gate (read about that and see the photos on Adam’s blog), and Briar Rose was in a long queue waiting to go up, so we had plenty of time for a chat and pick up some handy hints on composting toilets (what else?).  Adam’s lemon cake was, as ever, delicious.  Thanks guys.

Then on to Cambridge to meet up with our Peter at the Beer Festival, where we sampled about four halves each in five hours!  It’s interesting to note how the American craft beer industry has now influenced our taste in beers. Lots of ales featured American hops like Amarillo and Cascade. Common adjectives in the tasting notes this year were “orangey” and  “citrus” .  European beers too are having and influence, with quite a few wheat beers making an appearance.  I had a lovely orange wheat beer.  As usual the place was packed both inside and out and it felt like a big garden party, although a somewhat chilly one.

Now we’re back at home thinking ahead to tomorrow night when we board Indigo Dream ready to lock out of Bow locks at 5.48 am on Saturday.  I’m trying not to look at too many maps of where we have to go to get to the Medway,- it’s too scary.  I’m beginning to wonder if we ought to take sea sickness pills.


Halfie said...

For a very similar shot, from the canal, see here:

Vallypee said...

A very nice spot indeed, Herbie!