Friday, 13 July 2018

Whats that on the towpath, at Windsor!

Friday 13th July😈
We had a good mooring at Henley and Kev wishes now we had stayed for the festival as a fellow boater who was moored behind us told him there would be a good atmosphere.
We left at 9am on Wednesday morning and I put a wash on but paused it when we arrived at our first lock which was Hambledon. 
On our way through Henley.

Preparations for the festival.

The stage is set for Rita Ora. 
Looking back to Henley.
After we were through Temple lock we were hoping to get moored at Marlow and managed to get moored on the 24 hour moorings before Marlow bridge.
Looking across from our mooring Wednesday evening.
Thursday morning.
Passed under Marlow bridge 
Marlow Bridge 
I hung all my washing out and then we just relaxed in the sunshine for the rest of the day. In the 
evening we watched the England semi final and had a few beers, disappointed they lost as we thought they played fab but  they did well to get that far.
Thursday morning was overcast to start with and we left our mooring and headed for Marlow lock and as we approached the lock, the lockie started to open the gates and we went straight in. We wanted to top our water up, empty cassette & get rid of rubbish and so when we got to Cookham lock we stopped at the water point just before the lock. All done we were on our way. 
The old Bray studios

We had to use our horn as he was oblivious to us.
After we left Bray Lock we wanted to moor on a mooring that we had moored on when we were with George & Carol on Still Rockin and Sue & Vic on No Problem XL, we managed to find the mooring again and moored there. 
We were on our way this morning shortly before 9am as we wanted to get through Boveney Lock and get to Windsor to moor before it got busy. As we approached Boveney lock there was a trip boat about to leave and we were able to get straight in and down the lock. We have got moored inside bath Island.
We reversed in and as we were reversing we saw a young mink running along the towpath, it was looking for somewhere to get into the water to swim across to the island and managed to do so as we were nearing our mooring. 

Jaz has had a bad back leg which we think was caused in Marlow when she was chasing around with a French Bulldog, I think she has pulled a muscle as she couldn't put the leg down properly and Kev has had to lift her off the boat. I have given her some Metacam and it seems to have helped her as today she has managed to walk on it much better.

Tuesday, 10 July 2018

BBQ with two lovely boaters

Wednesday 10th July
On Friday morning we had a lovely cruise to Abingdon and managed to moor below the lock, we knew that George & Carol on Still Rockin were moored on the moorings at the weir side above the lock and wanted to see them both. We knew they were away but that they would be back on Saturday late afternoon, so we decided to stay at Abingdon for the weekend.
These two keeping cool.
High & Dry!
Going through the low bridge at Oxford.
We watched the England match on Saturday afternoon, we don't usually watch football but watched the previous game they played against Columbia and thought they played well in both. After the match on Saturday we sat at the stern with a beer and then George came over to us and asked if we fancied going to pub with him & Carol, so about 7pm all four of us walked to the bridge and went in the pub there , but can I remember the name of it!
On Sunday morning George & Carol managed to get moored down below the lock about two boat lengths behind us so that was good. As they still had their hire car they took me to Tesco, so I was able to replenish our beer, oh yes and I bought some food too! We had a BBQ with George & Carol  in the evening and very good it was too thank you both.

On Monday morning we went over to Still Rockin to see George & Carol  before we left Abingdon, they  then came on board Rock & Roll for a cuppa, after a natter  for a while we then said our farewells.
 Carol took our photo.
So Kev went over and took theirs.
Shortly after we had got through Goring  lock we managed to find a quiet mooring and stayed there for the night.
This boathouse ahead is for sale.

Who's this? 
We had a brief chat with Sue and gave Vic a wave, we hope to see them again on our way back upstream.
Bet these are bloody hot inside!
This morning we left our mooring about 8am our first lock today was Whitchurch and the Lockie told us that we may have a wait at our next lock Mapledurham as there were divers in the lock laying some electric cables, by the time we arrived at the lock and Kev had emptied the rubbish & cassette the divers had either finished or not started as the lockie opened the gates and we were able to go down.
 Leaving Mapledurham lock
This postbox makes me chuckle.
Love this boats name, my mums name!
When we got through Sonning Lock we saw a boat leaving a mooring so we pulled into his spot, we didn't want to stay there but wanted to let Jaz off the boat for a pee, it was crammed with cruisers all meeting there apparently one group were the Windsor boating club and another few cruisers from another club. So once Jaz had stretched her legs briefly and had a pee we got her back on board and set off once again.
When we got down Marsh lock at Henley we found a mooring and went to pay, apparently it is free mooring 10am to 3pm and overnight is £10. As we haven't been here before we decided to pay and stay, we went to the payment machine at the nearby carpark where you type in your boat name and pay with either coins or card. Kev paid with card but for some reason it only charged him £8 but it said the time of leaving was today at 7pm! Not good, so he rang the phone number on the machine and spoke to someone who said he could pay the £10 over the phone so that meant it would have cost £18 for the overnight stay!! I don't bloody think so, anyway we found the council office in the town and Kev went in there to sort it. The woman told Kev that they have had nothing but problems with these machines and so she took £2 off him to make it the total £10 and gave him a receipt to display in our window. There is a festival here tomorrow but we won't be staying for it.

Thursday, 5 July 2018

On The Thames

Thursday 5th July
On Monday morning we left our mooring at 7.30am and headed for Claydon locks, another lovely days cruising and when we got to Banbury we moored close to the Spiceball country park. I took Jaz for a walk in the park but it was too hot to take her far, there were quite a few boats as usual moored in Banbury, we didn't stay long we left Jaz in the boat and had a walk into the town but didn't want to leave her too long in the boat. We weren't gone too long and when we got back we opened all the windows and doors to let the air in and then we set off and I got off the boat to open the lift bridge to let Kev through and then set the lock for him. We stopped again at bridge 168 so I could pop over to Morrisons for some shopping, Kev also wanted to get some beer so he went with me. Once Kev had got the beer he went back to the boat and waited with Jaz for me to get back with the food shopping, I unpacked the shopping while Kev let go and we cruised until we were at bridge 172 and we pulled over and moored. The rest of this blog is just in photos as there isn't much to say about our journey so far, the weather is absolutely incredible. I will say that we are disappointed with the state of the Oxford canal as it is very over grown and due to the dry weather very shallow in some of the pounds towards Dukes cut.

Who Is this
Maffi at Lower Heyford
My maiden name!!

Kings lock, first lock on the Thames.
Moored opposite this!
We pulled over before Godstow bridge as we had something round the prop and we decided to stay here. I put a wash on and after it had finished and I had hung it up we had a walk over Godstow bridge to Lower Wolvercote and stopped for a beer at Jacobs Inn.

Sunday, 1 July 2018

Onto the South Oxford canal

Sunday 1st July
On Thursday afternoon we took Jaz for walk across the fields to Brinklow and had a couple of beers sat outside the Raven pub, we were under a brolly so it was cool for Jaz and we had taken water & a bowl with us for her. We have passed All Oaks Wood many times but never moored there and we have never been into Brinklow. 
On Friday morning we were away just after 7.20 am while it was cool, when we got to the moorings at Brownsover we moored and went to Tesco for some shopping and when we returned Kev moved the boat across to the water point while I unpacked the shopping. Once we were full again with water we were on our way to Hillmorton locks and there was a lockie on at the first lock, we wanted to get rid of some rubbish and the lockie kindly let us stay in the lock while Kev popped over to the bins, he filled the lock slowly for us. We didn't keep any other boater waiting as there wasn't a queue, it is always difficult to empty cassettes & rubbish here as there isn't any moorings to tie up to while you do it so I usually end up holding the centre line while Kev takes the cassette & rubbish!!
Anyway we were soon up and through the set of 3 locks at Hillmorton and travelled on to Braunston where we turned right onto the South Oxford canal and moored  for the day further along.
Moored on the South Oxford canal.
On Saturday we left about 8am and made our way to Napton where we managed to get moored ok on the visitor moorings. There was a Folk festival at the Folly pub, it was the last day of the festival and it was its tenth year of holding it there, apparently some of the money raised was going to various charities, we could hear the music at our mooring, we had a walk with Jaz in the evening to the Folly, folk music isn't our cup of tea but there were plenty of people there and so there was a good atmosphere.
This morning I walked with Jaz up to the bottom lock while Kev followed on the boat.
Waiting for the lock to fill
We changed places at the first lock.
Up in the 2nd lock.
While I was in the 2nd lock a man walking down the towpath told Kev that after the 3rd lock the pound was very low, when we were up in the 3rd lock we changed places and Kev got on the boat and I went to the next lock to let water down as Kev couldn't get over the cill on the 3rd lock. Once there was some water in the pound Kev was able to exit the 3rd lock. There was a boat coming down from the 4th  lock so I filled it for him and that let a bit more down for Kev. By now there were a few boats on the move so it wasn't long before we were up the flight.

Water Buffalo!
There are 3 fields full of these water buffalo, a man was telling me that the farm shop that sells water buffalo burgers also sell cheese but apparently it is Italian cheese as they aren't allowed to sell the cheese from the buffalo so they export it all!! Crazy!!

Whats that all about then!
Strange residence.
It was getting warmer and warmer but there was a nice breeze at times, we passed through Fenny Compton where the moorings were full, not that we wanted to moor there but it was quite busy too with boats on the move travelling in both directions. We travelled on until we arrived at the moorings at bridge 144 before Claydon top lock, we will stay here until the morning, so out with the bbq shortly!