Friday, 31 January 2014


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Well the Ducks and Fungi seem to relish this continual wet weather, but we will soon be acquiring webbed feet if it goes on much longer. The towpaths have turned into puddles and quagmires therefor we must wear our boots and wet weather gear everywhere we go now. So, boaters can be easily identified. They are reminiscent of ‘Michelin Man’ as they are the ones wearing several coats, with muddy boots and mud right up to their knees! To negotiate some of the huge puddles along the towpath we look like we’ve come from the Ministry of Funny Walks. Every day is a bad hair day too, for those of us who have hair that is!. Here is another friendly little boating character called Baxter who is on the boat next to us with his master, Alan.

Thursday, 30 January 2014

Goodness gracious me!


Now here is a rarity which came chugging up from the South Oxford Canal! Notice how brown the water has turned recently with all the muck washing down through the six locks  at Braunston.


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The towpath opposite the services where we moored was getting increasingly boggy and we needed a pump out. So we made our way along to the marina where we reversed in to breast up to another boat that was filling up with water and also diesel at £1.28 with 60/40 split. It started raining again before he finally moved back round into the marina, It is self service here so we went to buy our token for the machine at a the bargain price of £12.   (we have paid £20 in the past for one at Teddesley Lock btw ) We drew around the corner to fill with water outside the Stop House and ordered some hot sandwiches from Gongoozlers Rest as a treat to warm ourselves up.

Wednesday, 29 January 2014



It went quite dark mid afternoon, the wind whipped the bare branches of the trees around and we got pelted with rain. Then afterwards there was an eerie yellow light and the sky turned orange with a beautiful sunset, amazing. Luckily we had just returned to Oakfield  from Rugby. I popped into Asda and bought a couple of things including a new Kitchen Devil knife. The supervisor was called to look me over and give her permission. I suppose I didn’t look the type to stab anybody with it, so that was ok then!

Saturday, 25 January 2014


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To avoid catching two buses we cruised along to Braunston as I am slowly falling apart. Something came adrift and I discovered a large hole in my tooth. On ringing the Oradi dentist they squeezed me in fairly soon, so we had a quick trip into Daventry. It didn’t take long as she put a “sticky” filling in and I was soon fit for chomping my food again, brilliant! As you can see there are some nice wide-beam boats being worked on here in the marina at the moment. Some of the bigger trees have been felled and some severely lopped resulting on piles of woodchip on the side of the towpath. I took my bucket along to fetch some to fill in the large muddy puddles beside our boat. This stopped Oakfield from getting quite so mud-spattered when cyclists and joggers zip past.

Wednesday, 22 January 2014


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The Rabbits had been let loose to graze the towpath near bridge 74 and the others were enjoying the sunshine.

Monday, 20 January 2014


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We said goodbye to Del and Al, who was still in her pyjamas btw! There are several water taps along this stretch of canal so we had caught up with our washing by doing three loads while we were there. A boat was already on one of the water points when we reached Hillmorton, but as there were two taps we pulled up by the other one. The water was taking ages at a slow dribble, then we noticed that nb Meybe were spraying their boat to wash it. After asking them to stop we soon filled our tank and were away up the locks, depositing our rubbish en-route.

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One of each of the three duplicate locks were being worked on, and one of the paddles wasn’t working, so it took a while. Of course the little push-tug ‘Pochard’ was moored on the lock landing where boats need to swing round from the top of the last lock! I had a quick word with Jacquie on nb Timewarp as I passed by to find us a mooring.

Sunday, 19 January 2014


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It was pretty muddy hereabouts but the skies had some beautiful cloud patterns. Al and I walked up to the little local shop at the top of the hill  for a couple of things. The next day Mark came by to top both our boats up with fuel/coal. As usual Khali was posing on the top of the cabin as the Star of the show.There were plenty of walkers, joggers and cyclists passing by, all well plastered in mud. We reckon they areall  trying to get fit again after eating all those Christmas goodies.

Saturday, 18 January 2014


IMG_5370 Clifton GC           IMG_5371

After mooring up I walked along to see our friends Reg and Elaine who are overwintering at Clifton Cruisers. A warm welcome always awaits and much chattering and joking ensued over a cup of tea. Reg seemed quite chirpy as he drank his usual afternoon beer. It’s always good to exchange our news of what was going on locally and with other boaters that we know.


We spent one night of showery rain under the big tree which dripped loudly on our roof and woke us up several times. So when a boat left we quickly untied Oakfield, then reversed along to moor nose-to-nose with Derwent 6. Del was with Leon off The Old Bovine, so we had a mini-banter on all things boaty, until it began to rain.  As Al was down in London Del came aboard for a chat over afternoon tea and cake. On Al’s return we decided to chill out the next day, then go up to Butlers Leap in the evening. We squelched our way along the muddy towpath in the dark, then wiped our mucky boots along the grass verge as we made our way up to the warm welcoming pub. It was very busy, but they soon found us a table where we had lovely meals with drinks, followed by puddings, a real treat for us! Even better was the 50% off everything that Al had managed to acquire, perfick!

Friday, 17 January 2014


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Rugby/Brownsover is a good place to stay, as we can either walk into town which  is about a mile over the railway to peruse the shops, then pop into W’s and Asda., Or we can catch the No 4 bus every quarter of an hour from Brownsover into town, or a No 12 into Sainsbury’s. Also Tesco is a short walk away through the new houses or down the long footpath by the bridge. I have discovered a new-ish Aldi up the A426 from Bridge 58 which i arrived at on the 12 bus, then took the long walk back down to the canal. Now with our cupboards well stocked up, after just over a week here we were getting low on water. The washing was put on and we had showers to ensure the tank was completely empty. The next day was cool, but bright and sunny, when we set off to turn and take on water. It didn't take long to fill up because the water was flowing in pretty fast so we had to keep an eye on it. Sometimes the hose leaps out of the filler and thrashes around like an angry snake!


On our return past the moorings we paused on the Park side to drop off our rubbish.

Monday, 13 January 2014


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Sleeepy Swan,                                                 Singing Robin                                            

Saturdays usually start with Sounds of the Sixties, followed by Graham Norton’s Show then Tony Blackburn. This inspires me to do some of those inside jobs that boaters do occasionally, then maybe join the Cabin Boy in some relaxing chairobics, perfick! Sundays we usually phone the family to exchange news for the week. Sometimes I may cook a roast lunch on board, especially if the weather is cold. Thank goodness for Wetherspoon’s though, as recently we have taken the laptop there to sort it while we have ‘bottomless coffees’. Then we can smell all the lunch being served up and of course we just have to join in!

Friday, 10 January 2014

Sitting pretty.

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Well, here we are all on our own still enjoying our Christmas treats of chocolates, fancy biscuits and the occasional mulled wine, perfick! The squirrels seem to be searching around trying to remember where they buried their winter goodies too! We go out in-between the showers for long walks wrapped up warm as it is sometimes a bit nippy hereabouts.

Tuesday, 7 January 2014


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Around lunchtime we heard singing and on looking out found a group of people with an incense burner thingy. Anyway the chanting and praying went on for quite a while. Then a cross was dangled in the canal several times and a jug of canal water collected.

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I was intrigued to see that the gathered throng began drinking water from a little silver cup passed around amongst them. Then a swishy brush was dipped in the water and dabbed on top of everyone's head in turn, three times! This was going on for about half and hour and it was not only very cold but began to rain too. So, after they had finished their strange ritual they all quickly retreated into their cars and drove off.

Has anyone got an explanation for this strange behaviour?

Saturday, 4 January 2014

Fueling up.

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Mark came by with some much needed coal and diesel for us. It was raining cats and dogs at the time too! As usual Khali was supervising operations from her vantage point atop the cabin.She was dressed against the weather and Mark says she just will not stay inside because she likes to be where he is. We have tried most sorts of coal and have settled on Excel as our Squirrel seems to like it. Whish coal do you prefer?

Thursday, 2 January 2014


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As it was a beautiful calm sunny morning we were on the move again seeking out water and food. On our travels we encountered this little chap on a little boat with an outboard motor which looks a bit tricky to steer!