Saturday, January 08, 2011

Millions watch bloggers' cruise route on TV - although they don't know it!

Arriving home last night we collapsed on the sofa and turned on the TV, just catching the credits for Eastenders. I hasten to add at this point that I am not a soap watcher, and I may even quit following the Archers following the recent New Year travesty.  Anyway, I digress.  Leaping to my feet I shout "That's it!  That's where we've been today." And there it was, a neat aerial photo of our superb narrowboat cruise only hours earlier.  Nice of the BBC to show it, but they carelessly failed to point out the details of our route so I have pencilled it in for you.

Ruthlessly taking advantage of the extraordinary generosity and hospitality of Sue and Richard aboard Indigo Dream Kath and I  took up their offer of a free ride on the St Pancras Cruising Club outing to the Royal Docks.  Nearly all new water for us.  Down through Bow locks into the tidal Bow Creek,

out into the vast expanse of the Thames at Greenwich racing for the relative safety of the far bank,

eastwards through the Thames Barrier,

running the gauntlet of the Woolwich Ferry,

and then into the truly gargantuan Royal Docks, so large they have an airport in the middle.  It might look like we're going out to sea here but what you see is the inside of just one of the huge pair of docks.

Here we dash across the width of the dock

While an airliner comes into land over our heads

and another prepares to take off next to us

And so, in the failing light,  almost back to the dome again, but this time "inland"

Not a bad little cruise eh?

Indigo Dream was one of a convoy of eleven narrowboats making the trip all well spaced out but in radio contact in case of emergency.  The safety briefing beforehand was the scariest part of the journey!  Its a big dangerous river on which to have an engine failure or a fouled prop, and as for man overboard, well lets just say you can't just stand up and walk out like on many canals. In the event, the pouring rain stopped just in time, the river was calm, and there were no scary moments whatever.  Having said that I was reassured by a brief spell at Indigo Dream's tiller when I discovered what  ample smooth power she had.  I am truly envious.

Apart from Richard and Sue (and their three greyhounds, Lou, Lynx and Ty), we were also joined aboard by fellow blogger Adam of Debdale (and Canal Boat Magazine) fame,

and by Alison who had just read the open invitation on Sue's blog and took up the offer.

What a day.  Many many thanks to Sue and Richard and congrats to the St Pancras Cruising club for such a well organised cruise.

Come back tomorrow for some more pics. And keep an eye on the blogs of Sue and Adam for their take on the event.


Unknown said...

Wow! now that is SOME cruise (especially as most of us havn't been able to move in weeeeeks. You can always rely on Richard and Sue's amazing hospitality. Jill NB Matilda Rose

Anonymous said...

It was fab to have you on board and have lots of time for a natter. Very clever to spot the Eastenders thing - I didn't realise they showed the Royal Docks....

Fab photo of Adam - he looks like a proper skipper there!

Looking forward to future adventures with the 'Herbie's'

Sue, nb Indigo Dream

Adam said...

A proper skipper? I was thinking I looked rather stern.