Hooking Up For a Bit. 17th September

Radford Semele to Saltisford Arm

Before heading off to the Oxford we need to stock up on supplies so we needed to turn round. As we’d be heading westward we decided to see if there would be space at the Saltiford Arm for a couple of days where we could catch up on the washing and be plugged in.

Several boats came past as we were getting ready to push off, we spotted a gap and went for it. A second push to the bow was required due to the wind  pushing us back against the towpath, but we got away before we became a problem to the next passing boat. We winded and headed back into Leamington Spa.

P1400784smI had some work emails to do so left Mick to cruise us towards Cape Locks. The costume designer for the Panto had been asking about the size of a boat due to the size of the Dames costume and I’d asked about suitability of a rubber ring for a scene. Emails went back and forth for a while until we both had answers to all our questions.

P1400741smBack on deck we passed over the railway line we’d gone along on Saturday, no trains though. When we’d been at the station yesterday Mick had requested I took a photo of a train approaching the station, I was already doing so. The line in Leamington cuts it’s way through what was the old town, crossing a major crossroads at second floor height. I was fortunate enough to capture two trains whilst we were meant to be looking at the station gardens.

Our supplies would last us a few more days, so we decided to push on past Morrisons, Lidl, Tescos, Sainsburys and Aldi and do a proper stock up on our return in a few days.

P1400803smAs we approached Cape Bottom Lock there was a boat just entering it to go up. We’d already passed two boats that had been heading this way this morning, so it might be on it’s own. The gates closed, oh well. Then they opened again and a lady appeared and waved us in to join them, we’d been spotted. We weighed up whether we thought we’d be able to turn Oleanna below the locks. Jaq and Les from NB Valerie spent a winter in this pound, they called it Prison as they were locked in by stoppages and they both needed the local hospital. NB Valerie could be turned here after making use of the water point below the locks, we’re not sure how long she is, but we think Oleanna could possibly just do it too.

P1400807smP1400817smWe shared the two locks with the shareboat NB Endeavour who had plenty of crew and had come from Long Itchington this morning and were aiming to do Hatton today too. The lady seemed a bit put out that a C&RT chap who was there to grease the paddles didn’t help, but there were four of us working the locks so there was no need. It being lunchtime the moorings around the Cape of Good Hope pub were busy. Two boats were on the water point where we wanted to go, two boats were heading to the pub moorings. The ones on the water point then wanted the lock so there was some do-c- do-ing to be done as NB Endeavour had insisted that we leave the lock first. It would have been better if he’d gone and got out of the equation as we got in his way and he was then in the way of the boats from the water point who were in our way! It all got sorted in the end.

P1400815smWe pulled up mostly so that we could empty the yellow water tank before we might have to breast up at our mooring today. As we were by a tap we took advantage of that too. Empty and full we cruised up to the junction and turned left the easier option as right takes you to the bottom of the Hatton flight. Slowly we made our way down the arm, a lady came out from the office to say hello and tell us where to moor.

The visitor moorings are just beyond a winding hole, so winding first is advised and then you back down to find a space. There was one bank side space free, but we’d been told it was only 55ft, later once it had been taken Mick paced it and we would have fitted, however it was closer to the road. We reversed to find a suitable boat to pull alongside, NB Joanna. Unoccupied but with signs of a dog, this wasn’t going to be so good for Tilly sadly. Cat Health and Safety discussed our mooring  and decided that should the owner return whilst Tilly was out she’d have difficulty getting back to her boat, there would be a conflict of territories and that wouldn’t be fare on either Tilly or the Woofer. So no shore leave.

Late lunch before the hook up was sorted and then the washing machine was put to work pausing only for the dishwasher to have a go. TV was tuned in, our last stay here was prior to me starting to do TV thumbs. It deserved a diagonal thumb in the upwards direction, not perfect reception, but not bad.

P1400825smThe last of our Bramleys were chopped up and put into a Dorset Apple Cake still warm today for pudding and enough to keep us going for the next few days.

DSCF7121sm2 locks, 5.6 miles, 2 winds, 1 left, 0 shopping, 1 cat who is very aware of which her boat is and wouldn’t give 2 hoots about a woofer being inbetween! 1 cat still locked in despite her complaints, 2 many good trees to be missed! 2 boaters ignoring their cat, 0 visits to the pooh box if they let me out! 1 empty wee tank, 1 fill of the water tank, 2 loads washing, 1 dishwasher, 1 refill required in the morning, 1st pair of socks started, 1 yummy gf apple cake.

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