Tuesday, 24 March 2015

House sale completion

Tuesday 24th  March
Well that's that our house is no longer ours, the new owners have moved in today, I took the keys to them about 3.30pm, usually you have to pick up the keys from the estate agents but as they had travelled 100 miles and would have had to go another 16 miles to the estate agent and then back to Roos it made sense for me to pop the keys to them as we now live 4 miles away. It was a sad moment for me and I shed a tear as I left we have been very happy in that house and we have lived in Roos for   about 25years although not in the same house. I know it's only bricks and mortar but you do make a lot of memories but I am sure we will now make more memories on Rock & Roll. Here's to the future!!😂

Friday, 20 March 2015

Finally House Sold!!

Friday 20th March
At last I got a phone call this afternoon from Nicky our solicitor to say, contracts have been exchanged! The completion day is next Tuesday 24th March so hopefully the new owners Mr & Mrs Tillotson from Leeds will move in. They came to view the house in November last year and put their offer in which we accepted, they had sold their house and said their buyers wanted to be in their house in 6 weeks so as we had the cottage we moved in  after Xmas and we had plenty of time to empty our house. We didn't expect it to drag on til now but apparently it was a couple who were further down the chain that caused the delay, the reason I won't get into.

Wednesday, 18 March 2015

One at home & one on boat!!

Wednesday 18th March
There was quite a heavy frost this morning and the ropes had ice on them too! It had started the day misty but the sun broke through and it was lovely, we left our mooring just before 8 am as we were ready and the lock was full and so we could go straight in, so Kev let the ropes go and went to open the gates for me, well he was only going to open one gate but as you boaters know once you open one the other one 9 times out of 10 comes open too! It was a lovely cruise back to the marina at Shardlow and once there I sorted out my things while Kev tied up then I had a quick cuppa  before getting Buster into the car. I had to get back home as I have a few things going on at home and Kev wants to go onto the Trent for a few days. So he is on the boat and I am back home!!

Tuesday, 17 March 2015

A scare for Buster!

Wednesday 18th March
We had a walk back to The Cooper Arms at 6pm last night for a couple of drinks but were back to the boat about 7.10pm, Kev unlocked the door and I stayed on the towpath and he let Buster off for a pee.  We usually have his collar and lead on as with him being deaf he can't hear us call him back but for some reason last night we just let him off I was watching him and he was pottering along the edged of the hedgerow and then he went towards the stern and before I knew it he was jumping onto the stern, but there is canvas that goes round the stern to stop the dog  getting off the boat and so as he jumped he couldn't get on and he fell into the canal!! I couldn't get to him in time and he started to swim away and I frantically screamed for Kev to come, my god how scary it was to see my dog swim off into the dark. Kev came rushing out and asked if I could see him as I had a torch I jumped on the stern and could just see Buster swimming along the side of the boat and he was nearly at the bow. Luckily he swam round the front of the boat and came along the side of the boat next to the towpath and Kev managed to grab the scruff of his neck and pulled him out of the canal. A man had come from his boat which is moored behind us a several feet away as he heard me screaming and shouting like a mad woman and asked if everything was ok, he said he didn't come straight away as he thought my screaming was a goose! Yes I must have sounded like that I was absolutely frantic, we got Buster dried off and back inside the boat where it was lovely and warm as we had the fire on. We couldn't believe that he swam round the boat and didn't swim to the other side of the canal or worse drowned as he has been in the canal once before when we were on 4EverMoore and that time he just sank and Kev had to jump in after him, the fact that he can't hear made it worse as he wouldn't hear us shouting for him, thank god he is safe and sound now but it just shows you how sometimes a lapse of doing something could have had a worse ending. I love my dog!!

A gem of a pub at Weston!

Tuesday 17th March

This morning we didn't rush to leave our mooring as Kev wanted to fit the pressure relief valve and so I changed the bedding and did some tidying, we then left just after 10am and were soon at Stenson lock.
Kev entering Stenson lock

Kev in the lock, but he had to climb up the ladder as I could not open the bloody gate!! So heavy and he did say to me that I wouldn't be able to do it, I hate to be beaten but this time I was!!
We carried on and when we got to Swarkestone lock I let Kev set the lock and I stayed on board, I can do as I am told sometimes.
We got to the moorings just before Weston lock as we had decided we were going to stay here overnight and the sun was out so once we had got tied up, had Buster for a walk we went across the bridge heading to the village. (Some people may wonder why we take Buster for a walk before we go off anywhere, it is not that we don't want to take him but he doesn't want to venture far now, he is 14 years old with a bit of dementia and also has gone totally deaf and is happy to stay here on the boat.)Well we were glad we had a walk to the village as we found a fantastic gem of a pub The Coopers Arms and if anybody fancies going it is about a 10 minute walk and as you walk up the road from the canal turn right and you come to the village green and there is a sign pointing left and a short walk brings you to this pub. It had been totally renovated a few years ago and was built as Weston Hall in the 17th century and the building of it was abandoned when only half finished.

There is a lovely lake opposite the entrance

There is a well, a very large fireplace in one room & a carvery in another.

This lovely fireplace is in the bar and you can see there are 3 ovens and we were told that in the 2nd world war a german soldier was found hiding in the chimney above the fireplace!! We are going back later for a couple more pints!!

Monday, 16 March 2015

Moored at Willington

Monday 16th March

We left Fradley yesterday morning once again about 8.30am, and once again it was very cloudy & quite cold. I went to open the swing bridge for Kev, you don't need a key yet so it is quick to open & close with no messing, once Kev was through & I had closed the swing bridge I went to set the lock for him so it was a right turn for Kev but he had to wait for me to get the lock full before we could head back down through Fradley onto Trent & Mersey Canal once again.

Kev approaching the next lock at Fradley
When we were approaching Common Lock there was a boat just leaving so we could go straight in there was a man at the lock who was on another boat waiting to come up & he was with the boat that had just left so that was good for us, at last a lock in our favour! Then as we got to Alrewas a man sat on the bench saw us coming and kindly opened the lock gate, it was good as there was a bit of a breeze so we didn't have to hang about. We moored for a late cooked breakfast on the moorings before Alrewas Lock and once we had took Buster for a short walk and cleared the pots etc away I went unto the lock and filled it for Kev, and then we were on the river which was in green so safe to proceed but was flowing quite fast so it didn't take long to get to Wychnor bridge lock. When we got to Branston Water park we decided to get moored for the day so went through Branston Bridge where we moored, I have to say though that there is a lot of geese about here & so there is plenty of goose waste on the edge of the canal so maybe we should have moored before the bridge as there didn't seem to be any droppings there! It is awful getting it on your footwear as it is hard to avoid it. 
This morning was raining first thing but stopped as we were getting ready to leave Branston and so I took Buster with me to get Branston Lock ready while Kev slipped our mooring and by the time he got to Branston Lock I had filled it and opened the top gate for him. 
As we were passing the brewery distribution depot we passed this pair of swans busy getting their nest ready, they had a few helpers!
Then as we were approaching Shobnall Marina there was a boat just coming towards us through the bridge & the man on board waved to us to indicate he was turning and as he started to turn we noticed the name of the boat it was Nb Sanity Again but no sign of Bruce or Sheila at the tiller! It was another man, he wasn't turning the boat around but was reversing into Shobnall Marina, we forgot to get a photo,  the man then came onto the marina bridge to thank us for waiting.

Kev took this photo as I am going into Dallow Lock, on his phone & its not very clear!
We were heading to Willington as Kev wanted to go to Midland Chandlers at Mercia Marina to buy a pressure relief valve for the Calorifier so we managed to moor opposite Mercia Marina at the 
footbridge. We will stay here until tomorrow and Kev will change the valve before we leave.

Saturday, 14 March 2015

Crazy Roosters!

Saturday 14th March

Yesterday morning was dreadful, pouring with rain, we weren't sure how long it would last and we wanted to meet up with Pam & Terry (nb Roosters Rest) who were moored near Tamhorn Park bridge. Anyway Kev decided that I would stay inside the boat & he would set off, we were going to stop briefly so he could post his mam her mothers day card and so we moored at Whittington only tying the centre line as there wasn't much boat activity! The rain had eased now and it brightened up slightly but at least it stopped raining and we were soon mooring in front of Roosters Rest being met by this mad couple with red noses on!
Once we had got tied up, got the canopy up and had taken Buster for a brief walk we went onto Roosters Rest for some sandwiches that Pam had made for us, I took a broth that I had made so we all  had a really good afternoon.
Tied up ahead of Roosters Rest

Drink gives you a red nose!

Another drinkers red nose!

We had a lovely afternoon with these two crazy Roosters so thanks Pam & Terry.
This morning we were ready to set off and head for the winding hole just before Bonehill bridge to turn and before we left we offered to take some rubbish off Pam & Terry as we were going to head back to Fradley and they were only moving as far as the moorings outside Kings Orchard Marina. When we got to Sutton road bridge there was a coal boat (didn't see a name on it) moored just through the other side of the bridge so after we had gone to turn at the next bridge we pulled in to the towpath and got a gas bottle from him £25. I know there are some places selling gas a bit cheaper but when possible we like to give these boats our custom as we wouldn't want to lose these boats from the canal system.

As we were approaching Huddlesford junction there is a Swans nest here (where the boulders are) and when we passed yesterday there was a swan sat on it, we have passed here a few times and the last time we saw a swan on the nest it was on our first boat 4EverMoore a few years ago now but how strange that this nest seems to be used every year!
Not far from here we had to pick up a present from Rooster Rest.....

Not a bloody present..... another bag of rubbish!! Ha Ha

Bye you crazy Roosters the bill for rubbish disposal is in the post! Take care and see you both soon.
We are now moored back at Fradley on the Coventry canal and there are quite a few boats here now compared to yesterday when there were only 4 and one of them was us!! We will go for a well earned pint to the Mucky Duck shortly. It has been really cold travelling here today but at least we didn't get rain.

Thursday, 12 March 2015

Moored at Fradley

Thursday 12th March

It was another dry morning a bit overcast but milder than yesterday and we were away from our mooring just after 8.30am. When we were approaching Tattenhall lock a boat was just leaving it and the man aboard it told us there was a problem with the bottom gates, they wouldn't close properly and so when we were inside the lock he was right there was an inch gap between the gates but we managed to fill it ok.
Yesterday I forgot to mention that we passed a man who was fishing next to his boat and as we were passing he caught a large fish and when we asked what it was he said it was a Zander! Never heard of that before but he was having it for his tea! I googled it and it was quite interesting apparently it is not a fish native to the UK but for those fishermen among you I am sure you will know of it.
Not a good photo of the Zander but it was quite large honest!!
Anyway back to our cruise today, a few boaters on the move today and the sun actually made an appearance at one point and by the time we got to Alrewas it was really quite nice although there was a breeze about. We moored just after the lock landing and after having something to eat we had a walk to the shop for some bits (well mainly a case of beer) there are some lovely houses in Alrewas and quite a few with thatched roofs, as we were walking passed one house there was a lovely old car parked behind gates.

Once back aboard the boat we put our few bits of shopping away and we were on our way again and Kev walked ahead to do the lock and I followed on the boat the wind was getting a bit gusty at times and were glad we weren't going much further. There's a lot of work going on along the canal and at Bagnall lock there were men working putting new piling in at the lock landing and as we approached Common lock there is work on both sides of the canal on land adjacent to either side and Kev spoke to a woman who is on the permanent moorings there who said that the work was to do with a gas pipe that they want to run under the canal but they are having problems as it keeps collapsing as it is very sandy. We moored briefly at the water point near the cafe & shop and topped up the water, emptied the cassette & got rid of rubbish then I went to set the lock for Kev and after we left the lock we then turned left onto the Coventry Canal where we are moored, it is very strange at Fradley today as there are hardly any boats moored here and we have never seen it so empty of boats. We will be meeting up with Pam & Terry (Roosters Rest) tomorrow so we are looking forward to that.

Wednesday, 11 March 2015

A sunny start this morning

Wednesday 11th March
The forecast for today was wind and rain but we woke up to lovely sunshine but with a frost, and so we decided  that we would wait a bit but we set off from our mooring above Stenson lock about 8.30am.
Leaving our mooring this morning
It was quite cold but lovely in the sunshine and we had the canal once again to ourselves well at least until we were through bridge 24 at Willington then we had 2 boats pass us. 
These are the first Daffodils I have seen that were fully opened, is it spring?

We have seen several pairs of swans along the way, and I expect they will be building their nests very soon, and I have to say once they have young it is a brave person who tries to pass them if they are on the towpath. Last year I saw a pair with young and the people walking on the towpath were all turning back and walking in the opposite direction! 
We got to Dallow lock which was empty as we thought it would be as we had 2 hire boats pass us shortly before we had got there, although this lock isn't very deep so it doesn't take long to get through it. We decided to moor up at Shobnall fields to have a cooked breakfast/lunch, most enjoyable! Once we were fed and watered, we pulled the pins and set off again,  Kev did the washing up while I was on the tiller (yes he has his uses) he was finished well before we got to Branston lock so was able to do the lock with me. As we were approaching the lock  a boat was just leaving but also a boat was at the lock landing about to go in, but then there was another boat  waiting to come down so that was all good. It was starting to get quite breezy now so we pulled onto the moorings before Branston Bridge and called it a day albeit a short day as it was only 1.10pm but then as Kev had just got the side panels in on the canopy the rain started so we never got wet today!

Tuesday, 10 March 2015

Back aboard for a short trip

Tuesday 10th March

Here we are back on the boat for a week, Kev actually came to the boat on Saturday on his bike as I was unable to come as I had to have an Endoscopy yesterday, been having trouble with my stomach! Won't go into that!! Endoscopy not a nice experience I have to say I think I would rather give birth!
Anyway I arrived at the marina this morning around 10.30 am and Kev had the kettle on for a cuppa, Nigel was also there too although he was going home later but helped us unload the car & while I unpacked my things Kev took Buster for a quick walk & then we said our goodbyes to Nigel and left the marina about 11.20 am. What a lovely day it has been lovely sunshine but at times a bit cool but then again it is still early March, I haven't got any photos as there wasn't really much happening and we only met one boat which was a hire boat and that was at Aston Lock, we were just entering the lock as they were coming the opposite way, a family from Canada who said they had enjoyed the canal holiday. It really is nice to see people from all over coming to the UK to enjoy boating on the canals. Anyway we finally moored above Stenson lock about 4.15 pm and it is just starting to get cool so we now have the fire lit  and are all snug.