The time seems to be whizzing along although we are not. We had a nice quiet weekend on our countryside mooring after the locks at Semington. The canal is reasonably quiet at the moment; a few hire boats, and others like ourselves just passing through.
On Monday 10th July we were moving again for a rendezvous with a second cousin of mine (my mother’s cousin’s daughter) and her husband; we are never quite sure what the relationship is, but have been in touch for a number of years now. Sandra and Brian live in Essex, and have a daughter that lives nearby to where we were moored; they travelled to visit us in their motorhome and combined it with a visit to their daughter. We had to get through some locks to meet them so were up early and on our way to Sells Green, managing to get moored with the bow on the very end of the visitor moorings, and the stern in the rough and way off the bank; so plank out once more. We met Sandra and Brian at The Three Magpie’s pub for lunch, and they had managed a parking slot in the nearby campsite. It was lovely to see them and catch up, but sadly didn’t take any photo’s of them this time. In the evening Izzy had a good play with Sandra’s GSD puppy and another terrier type in the campsite’s dog field. The weather has remained very warm and humid, and for these few days it remained overcast. Tuesday 11th July we said goodbye to Sandra and Brian, hopefully we see them again soon. In the afternoon we had heavy rain (the first for a while), and we noticed that we had water coming in from somewhere; summising it was probably the kitchen window, although not sure. We needed to turn the boat around to sort it out as the window was canalside and Charlie couldn’t see properly whilst hanging off the gunwales. So Wednesday 12th July we moved along a short way to Foxhangers wharf, as there was a winding hole there and we could easily turn the boat round and reverse back to the mooring spot. Charlie resealed the offending window; hoping it is going to sort the problem. We will have to wait for the rain again to see. Later in the day we walked up the locks with Izzy to Caen Hill.
Thursday 13th July and we moved up 6 locks to a rough mooring before the Caen Hill flight, and decided we would stay for the weekend as no time restriction.
We heard from our boating friends Mary and Stephen, informing us that they have left Bristol and heading for Bath. We were planning to do the 16 locks of the Caen Hill flight on Monday, but had an alert from crt that the flight was opening late (10am instead of 8am), due to a broken paddle needing fixing on one of the locks within the flight. On Saturday we were able to get onto one of the 48hr visitor mooring slots in the pound below the flight, so we decided we would move up the locks on Sunday as they open. The weekend had remained overcast but warm.
Up and atom on Sunday 16th July; early breakfast and into the bottom lock as the lock keeper arrived to unlock the flight. A hire boat that had been moored behind travelled up with us. It took 2 hours and 30mins for us to do the 16 locks. Charlie did the lock wheeling and I handled the boat. I managed to get a shot of this chap overseeing the proceedings.
There was no one travelling down the flight which was very unusual for a weekend; and we stopped on the 24hr moorings at the top of the flight. As we had done the whole of the 29 locks in one go on the way down; it was nice to take our time and split it up on the way up.
Another 6 locks negotiated on Monday 17th July and again another stop at Devizes Wharf, as we didn’t stop here on the way through. 72hr moorings here; and it is quiet on the towpath as it is closed for upgrading. Tuesday 18th July and we walked into Devizes for a look round.
Wadworths are the biggest in this area owning many pubs.
We purchased a couple of items, and I found another barbers for a haircut. Checked out the charity shops as always (much to Charlie’s disgust), but managed to find 2 nice shirts in them. I’m also investigating whether I can send a box of Shreddies to Oz as the grandkids cannot get them there. The post office lady said I couldn’t but so far I’ve not found anything to suggest I can’t.
Today I set off early for a haircut (£8.50 my kinda price), and had a quiet mooch around the shops on my own. Overnight we had some rain with thunder, but no further water leaks thank goodness. We will be moving again tomorrow to hopefully stop at Horton and The Bridge Inn. We had a nice meal there before so we may treat ourselves again. I also need an easy access place for Sainsbury to deliver.