8am and the Herbies are still lying in bed wondering if we'd get through Nells Bridge today. Suddenly we hear the sound of an approaching boat from the direction of Aynho weir. Kath leapt to her feet and into some clothes (although I fear not the full set) and stuck her head outside.
"Have you just come through Nells Bridge?"
"How much clearance is there?"
"Plenty, you'll get through."
Yippee! In no time flat we were dressed, mooring ropes untied and on our way, eager to beat any queue.
Arriving at Aynho lock, we were behind just one other boat, another was following behind us. I went forward to have a look at the river gauge.
Oooh! Half an inch of yellow. The river must have dropped several inches overnight. Let's go for it.
Through the lock and on to the offending low bridge into the lock and we were indeed OK.
It was even sunny on the other side. Forget plans B and C (which included accepting kind offer from Bones Taxis Inc.) on how we were going to get to Cambridge this weekend (not by boat of course), we were back on Plan A.*
Well to cut a long story short, we're now home and dry. in Cropredy. Well not exactly dry because it was a wet afternoon, so we're home and er drying.
And so ends the Autumn 2019 cruise of the Herbies. We didn't quite get to Reading, but Pangbourne was pretty near and we got to meet up with George and Carol, and Bones and Maffi and Alex. So all in all it was eventful, sociable, and above all lucky in so far as we were stranded for only one and a half days and only got a soaking twice in three weeks. But for a few hours we could still be stuck on the Thames.
What's next? Who knows, except some new engine mounts for Herbie as one of 'em has started to delaminate at the rubbery bit. There's always something. Stay tuned.
*Apologies for all the brackets, I seem to be in BODMAS mode.