Monday, 29 August 2011

can you see Finlay?

the three amigos.

Well we are starting to wind down from our trundles now.
Sunday, was lunch at Little port(hm, carvery, but they need to get their act together as regards room for manoeuvre with a plate of grub) However the meat was quality and plenty of it, although I did ask for another slice of beef for my old chap. He would eat beef every day if he could.
Did a small shop-up/stock-up and then off to Prickwillow Engine museum.

It was magnificent. There are about 7 different old fashioned engines, that were used for fen drainage etc. but we now realise we want to go back on a “run” day, when the volunteers get the engines running. I didn’t think I was going to find it so interesting . the mirlees summat or other was enormous. Some good hands-on diagrams to play with, and good explanations of how a 2 stroke and 4 stroke piston diesel engine works., ……………………wow, mind blowing. Some of these chaps were pretty damn clever. Anyway a very enjoyable hour, and hopefully we will go back in December, and here these wonderful engines working. Can’t wait.

So, the last few days,will be spent down Brandon Creek or The Little Ouse, there is reasonably priced fuel here, pub at the top, and then by the end of the week we will be trundling off back through Salters Lode and home.

I don’t think we will be getting into any more tricky situations, so I will say Hasta Luego until next time.

Thank you for reading/following this blog, and hope it wasn’t too boring. !!!

Next Year we will be trundlin’ from april to October, and will be off to the northern canals e.g. peak forest, leeds/Liverpool, Lancaster etc. I expect I will blog.
So, I will blog off. X
Is there anyone out there ?

Friday, 26 August 2011

'wild' swimming in Wicken Lode

look at this lovely old boat. Don't think anyone loves her anymore. If Mick and I were a bit younger, it might appeal as a project. !

Monday we said goodbye to Andrew on NB Sextant, and made our way back to Ely, for more shopping( necessary as we are off to remote waterways), pump out and water. We were going to get straight of again, but as time was pushing on, we decided to stay the night( loads of gongoozlers and a few Johnny foreigners, asking questions of Mick, whilst he tried to listen to the cricket !).

That night spotted NB Lucky Duck ( james, Amy and Lyra the cat), passing by, so we waved and hello’ed. We shared a few locks leaving Leicester a few years ago. They have a blog( very good), so have a look.
The EA mooring down the River Lark is Rubbish. !

Very high banks, so you need to have the agility of a mount ain goat to scale them. EA had given the banks a shave, cutting through brambles, so poor Finlay got thorns in his pads and had to tip toe about. Absolutely Useless. However, we are going to have a look at the Prickwillow engine museum. There is a big
Beam engine that, in its heyday, used to lift 140litres of water a minute out of the fens. Impressive or what?

Its august bank holiday week-end and guess what?

Rain, Rain, Dull etc. That’s the advantage of the canals, in bad weather, your boating experience does not have to stop. As beautiful as the rivers are, the moorings are few and far between, and they are at their best when the sun is shining. Hey ho.

We are now down the beautiful River Wissey. Bank holiday weather = rain n showers, cold breezes and white cloud. Tch !

Sunday, 21 August 2011

Dennis( Pugwas) !

Finlay has had a hard day, as usual, but he will only get into a chair that has been warmed up first. !

Tuesday we met up with Scooby and Rita on NB Festina Lente. We always have a jolly good wheeze when we meet up with these two.
Anyway, after pumping out, fuelling and watering up, we all trundled off back to the last lock and moored up for the day.
They weren’t that impressed with the mooring as it had plenty of cow pats, duck muck, etc. but it was too windy to sit out anyway, so we pooled all our grub and went on to their boat, for good food and drink, had a game of whistchivous, and excellent company, as always.

So we are looking forward to seeing you again soon.

Wednesday we made pour way back towards Popes Corner, on the Ouse- many years ago there used to be a good pub here called The Fish and Duck,where we used to meet up with mates, when we had our 23ft Freeman called Pedlar II. Heady days, they were.

Thursday we made our way to Ely, to stock up for the visit of Susan and Dennis. I had asked a local hostelry if we could have an online delivery sent to their car-park for me to collect( in their car-park in the morning, when there would have been no punters about) but they said NO. Manager said NO> tch tch.

We knew that heavy rain was on its way for the pm, so we managed to get the last space on an EA Mooring( now full of narrowboats, that won’t go down well with the cruisers !). Onto the” 5 Miles from anywhwere- No hurry “ pub for Friday, and in place ready to pipe the visitors aboard on Saturday.

Friday, we decided to go down to our fave EA mooring at Upare, away from the pub. It is just so lovely down here, Great walking etc.

Saturday, was a full day with Susan and Dennis, they arrived at 9.30 and departed about 7pm. Plenty of laughs, and the blokes managed to catch about 6 fish between them. We bbq’d down at the wicken fen mooring, and that encouraged a family to put out a blanket and pic-nic, and then another narrowboat got the tables and chairs out for lunch. We were left in charge of a canoe and another inflatable while the owners went off to the National Trust shop and coffee shop ( for expensive tea and bun ! 2 cups of luke warm tea and 2 buns = £6.50) cor. !.

Sunday, and we think a chum called Andrew on NB Sextant is heading our way.

Monday our 48hrs is up, so we may trundle off towards Cambridge( I wonder what the charity shops are like ????).

Monday, 15 August 2011

I see that you have managed to sort that comment thing Melva/ Bilko. what did you do right/wrong. ?? well done anyway. off towards Popes Corner tomorrow. what a shame we do not have our popemobile with us. !!!
we loved this boat, aaaahhhh

scrumped blackberries

this is how clear The River Great Ouse is. !!!

Hotel boats

Mick HAS ASKED me to tell you that he requested an extra yorkshire pudding at the pub and had to pay 89p for it.! and the girl was the one who asked him if he wanted another, she never said owt about having to pay for it. Also speckled hen was £3.05 per pint and £1.60 half pint, so I have been told not to ask for a half pint next time, I must have a pint. Fair do's. Staying at this lovely moooring today, to do some washing, have a bbq etc,

Sunday, 14 August 2011

We enjoyed mooring at St Neots, the town is nice, and there is a lovely park for dog(finlay) walking , places for a dog(finlay) to swim, trees for a dog(finlay) to pee against and gather fallen branches for the said swim. Etc.

We visited the market before we left, well I dragged Mick there, but there were a couple of bloke stalls- you know it has all this natty little gadgets that a bloke can’t do without( pocket screwdrivers that fall apart at the first sign of having to be put into use, and other strange devices that make Mick murmur “ I think I may need that” “ yes, yes I have always wanted one of those” etc).
I bought catering tin foil, 4 packs of incense sticks to light when we use the dunny, and 4lb new spuds.

Then we spotted a queue for the ……………………….bakers stall. ! well we needed some bread, but the hoards in front of us were requesting chelsea buns , Eccles cakes, cream donuts as well as bread. Must be good baking with queues like that. ! it was good bread and the Chelsea bun and Eccles cake x1 and shared were very good. Yum.

Trundled off toward Bedford, but just after Great Barford ( very nice place), we spotted some “dinglydell” or “hideyhole” or “very secretive” moorings called …… oh ok then, Old Barford Mill grass bank mooring- what a long way of saying- pretyy, pretyy pretty. ! cor, we nearly went past, when I spotted the EA SIGN, and so we did a quick turn( not really) and trundled off back to this mooring, having decided that we were not bothered about going any further, now. Oh this place was devine. And if the weather had been sunnier and hotter, In think we may have stayed a bit longer.
Why, oh why can’t folks take their rubbish home.? Anyway their was a nice little garden seat affair, that had been erected for someone who had died, and I put a little note inside the framework, asking that visitors leave it nice for someone else and take their crap home. Please excuse me, but it makes me so angry. ! GRRRHHHHHH.

So we had to get back to “ oh no, not Huntingdon” again, to have the wiring for new fridge done.
eventually we managed to leave and decided to have a good cruise as we will be meeting up with Stepmum and Den at the week-end, so thought we would give the batteries a work-out. We ended up at the GOBA moorings nr to the Ferry boat Inn, say no more. We went for a pint and stayed for lunch. It wasn;t bad, but I had to let them know that I thought they may have stored their veg nr to the fruit as the cauli and broc and carrots tasted fruity. !!!

However, this is a lovely cow meadow, so there is good swimming access for Finlay, plenty of trees for sticks, and I found a bumper crop of Blackberries.

But, the high light of the day was the family that turned up next to us. I don ;t think the script witers for the 2 ronnies could have done any better.

Big cruiser moving towards us, lots of shouting and whooping and “ hope we ‘aven’t ruined your peace” comments. They careen to a stop amidst lots of shouting and yelling, a foot ball is kicked off the boat,followed by a couple of dogs( not kicked off the boat, I hasten to add), 2 youths, a plump lass and a gaggle of little kids, then dad is shouting over to us about the peace being ruined, we say, no matter you enjoy yourself. The next thing we hear is ,I think, nanny and granddad moaning that they have moored a bit far out and “ ‘ow em I going to git me leg over there” comments, a lot of guffawing and chortling going on at this comment. Soon, there are a couple of strapping women ,who obviously belong to the Diamond Geezers, who have sprayed themselves liberally, with some sort of disinfect…. Perfume, followed by the other diamond geezer . There are a lot of kids, dogs, balls, people milling about at this point , but in the wink of any eye they have hot footed off to the pub leaving their boat………………………completely open. Good thing we were there to keep any eye on it( even though Mick was fishing and I was engrossed in a book. !) ah , and that brings me on to something else. And I will put a pic of the little day b oat on for you. But there is Mick fishing, anyone would think it was cold as he had a fleece on. !!!! but anyway,this day boat went by with some not unattractive slappe……ladies on it, and one of them shouted out to my husband “ I’ll be your catch “. What ? What ?
I think she may have had a few , and I suppose I should be flattered. ! Mick won’t shut up saying things like “ I can still pull ‘em and I’ve still got it, you know.!” Bless. !!!!!.

Friday, 12 August 2011

hi all,.

NOw this is not a proper post, but a chum of mine in Spain, is trying to post a comment, and it won;t post. can anyone help, as I am a bit of a numpty with this stuff, just looked at some posts that I found from last year even. !!! that I hadn't noticed. perhaps Scoob y can help, as him and Rita are good at this. Melva watch this space.

will post proiper tomoroowe, we are back at HUNtingdon( big yawn).

Wednesday, 10 August 2011

At the Houghton mooring we were entertained by an elderly black lab.
We thought he belonged to two people sitting in chairs under a tree, as he sat facing them , with a fixed stare on his face. Then a cruiser pulled up, and when I looked over, he was sitting outside of it, and being thrown various tit-bits, I assumed that he belonged to them, BUT IF SO, WHY HAD THEY GONE OFF AND LEFT HIM. The next time I looked up he had moved himself to the narrowboat next to us. The people and their teenage( daft) daughter sat outside, but as they had their own dog, they were not too happy being stared at by black labby, so they went inside and shut the door, Labby got up from his laying down position and ambled along the side of the boat looking through the windows. He spotted them in the saloon, so positioned himself there and stared patiently through the window. Next , the adults went off with their dog,leaving teenage( daft) girl in the boat, she obviously moved somewhere else in the boat, cos black labby moved with her, peering in at the windows. She then came out, and informed us that as she had been able to read the phone number on his tag, she had phoned his owner to come and fetch him !!!. The owner informed her that he was on his daily round of boats and would bring himself home via the local pub. !!!!! Isn’t that great ?

Moved off to Huntingdon, lovely town and nice moorings, and then went on a hike to Godmanchester, across the river, to find some maggots for mick..
Having problems with expensive new 12v fridge, but it turns out that it is our wiring.! Its not man enough to keep up with the new equipment, so looks like a re-wiring job. As they saying goes BOAT, stand for Bring Out AnotherThousand( £). Hey ho. Now you can see why I am a fan of charity shops. !!!

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Gorgeous day and on to St Ives. Pretty town, stopped for a bit of shopping, and as we had to reverse into the EA moorings, there were a few white boat folks looking very nervous. They needn’t have been, as Mick is good at handling his boat. But one of them did not have a sence of humour, good coming from people who had 3 little birds in a cage on their boat.

Onto to Houghton mooring which is a GOBA mooring, there’s loads of room for everyone here, and its such a great place, and comes complete with a very small herd of cows that turn up evenings and mornings.

Mick did some fishing, but the maggots that James gave him have now turned to chrysalids, the bread won’t stick together, so we hiked 2 miles back to St Ives to try and track down a bait shop. It closed some time ago. HOWEVER, tomorrow onto to Godmanchester , where there Are some maggots to be had. Then we may even come back here. We are hanging about until Sunday, when “the gang” will be visiting, and with our boat and theirs, we are off for a cruise and picnic.

Finlay likes it here, as he can get into the water on the slipway, but then the towrag doesn’t want to come out. !

There was a storm and loads of rain last night, and it looks like the same is going to happen tonight.

The big boat near to us, had his rope untied by some naughty boys last night, but the old boy on board happen to hear them and got up to investigate, to see them running off.
Phew its warm, but becoming a tad cooler tomorrow and loads of rain. Well, plants and boat need re-freshing, to say n othing of us. !!!

Monday, 1 August 2011

James on NB Hummingbird had kindly given Mick some maggots etc. Mick enquited as to whether he could place maggots in my lovely new fridge. Errr. NO!

Anyway after getting through Denver Sluice he has done some fishing, with mixed results. Some lovely Roach, and some tiny wee things/.

Friday we arrived in Ely, andJean of Peter and Jean on Arachne, came and collected us totake us to their house for dinner, and it was also an opportunity to admire Peters “plastered” ankle and leg. He took a nasty fall being gentlemanly at a bridge-hole, leapt for the bank to allow another boater through and promptly was up to his neck in the cut, with his ankle at a 90 degree angle. OUCH. Anyway we had a great evening catching up and Thank you both again. We will see you on the return, and see if Peter can hobble onto Trundle for dinner.

James and June ( our neighbours in Fox marina) are doing the same trip as us, so at some point we will have a meet up with them.

We love Ely. It has a nice feel about it, but time to move on. After fish n chips for lunch, we moved off in the pm. ( by the way, Down Brandon Creek - young people running the boatyard and Fuel is 88ppl and do your chosen split. Info for boaters. Bridge boatyard in Ely for 90/10 = 95ppl.)

I have now had it confirmed that I need to lose a few pounds/stones etc. Browsing Ely market and a slim young lady handed me a leaflet for a salon specialising in weight loss for older ladies. Tch !!!!!
No chance until after Scotland in September. ! but we have bought some old bikes, so we have every intention of doing a bit of cycling in the winter. Probabley to Ramsey, where thers is a very n ice Indian restaurant and some good pubs. !!!!!!!! Ha.

So we trundled off to our old stamping ground of Upware, and it was full up, so even better we went through the wee lock into Burwell Lode and moored up at the top of Wicken Lode. ( absolute heaven). Just the sound of birds, insects and the breeze through the rushes and reeds.

We really love this area, and plan to have about 5 days here onm the return.

Phone call from Chris in Yorkshire. They will soon be off to Turkey, so I will be able to have a look at their blog.
After Finlay and I had had a walk around the fen. I with a cut on my heel, Finlay got stung on his paw( this is really a lovely place, !!!!), and a cooked breakfast courtesy of Mick, we slipped our moorings, and off onto “ cowboy Waters” aka The Old West River- another favourite. We also have GOBA ( Great Ouse Boating Assoc.)membership, so we can use their moorings and we found a very nice one just befor the Lazy Otter Public House. No good using the pubs moorings as they won’t let anyone on over 35ft.

We made some friends who live along this river and we are endeavouring to stop and say hello to them. But as always, it’s a busy time in the summer.Anyway will give you a mention MICK AND SHARON.

Next Sunday, we are having a big meet up with Roger and Bridget and their family at Buckden. They will be on their cruiser, and it will be a chance to wish Clare and Roger every happiness before their wedding at Gretna Green in a few weeks.

So Monday and its verrrrry warm, on the way to Earith and our next mooring, I had put some washing in- fine , then put washing into spinner and ……PHT and a bit of a smell. Somethings gone wrong with my lovely little washing machine. So it looks like Mick Moths will be let loose from his wallet again.At least these mini twin tubs are only about £85. not much if you say it quick.

Saw and owl box with something in it. As we got closer I got the bins and found out that it was a rather large…………………..GREY SQUIRRELL.