Squeaky Clean. 17th February

Eastwood Lock

This morning we decided that Tilly could go out, when we were here on Lillian we hadn’t liked the look of the fence alongside the moorings, so shore leave was not granted. However nearly two years later we are a touch more relaxed, the fence would still be a problem if she got into trouble. Most days when she is out she most probably gets to places we’d never be able to access.
Last night we’d let the stove go out, being able to be on shore power means we can run the central heating on it, so we wouldn’t wake up to a cold boat. This meant Mick could do his best Dick Van Dyke impression and give the chimney a sweep. He changed the fire brick at the front of the stove but is saving the new glass for summer. We’ll look into trying to find a suitable vermiculite brick replacement for next time. 
Mucky boy!
The bank here is quite high, but I really wanted to get the rest of Oleanna clean, so started on the port side after cleaning the roof down from where Mick had tried to hide the mucky marks. 
Tilly had easily found her way under the fence where there were gaps. After a while she started to frantically try to get through where there was no gap. I told her to go back the way she’d come, not thinking much of it, until I heard cat howling!
There behind the fence Tilly had met a local cat, neither of them were pleased to see each other. Tilly was winning at the arched back and bushy tail stakes, neither of them were showing any sign of moving. I tried to suggest that Tilly came home and that she was only a visitor and would be gone tomorrow, so wasn’t worth the fuss. Eventually Tilly listened and  made her way towards a gap, only to be followed and then pounced on. Not really wanting any vets bills,I did my best to shoo the other cat away as a bit of ruff and tumble was starting. Luckily I was scary enough for the other cat to high tail and Tilly came back through the fence and was grounded for an hour.
First load of washing

During the morning the washing machine had been busy and the whirligig was put into use. But now I really wanted to get to the starboard side of Oleanna. We needed water again, so we decided to reverse into the lock to fill the tank and as it filled I would wash the starboard side all the time hoping nobody would appear from below wanting to come up. We were fortunate and I managed to finish just as the tank was full and we left the lock before anyone else needed it.
Yesterday afternoon we’d been joined by a Dutch Barge that had come from Rotherham. This morning they were having difficulty in getting the engine started, flatteries. We couldn’t help as our batteries are 24volt. All things were considered and in the end one of them headed off to get his boat and toe the dutch Barge back to it’s mooring. 
One pooped cat

He returned with his boat an old cruiser. They tied the boats together and set off, the cruiser straining all the way. There was wind that wasn’t helping and at one time when we looked they had managed to jack knife themselves.
Late afternoon a narrowboat came to join us. Didn’t catch the boats name, but Rob and Sue came for a chat. They are also Continuous Cruisers and came off the Trent at Keadby several days after us after spending several months up on the Chesterfield Canal. They also had problems at Godnow Bridge, it appears that the level crossing needs over riding to let the bridge work.
Whilst chatting the Lock Keeper from the Tinsley Flight called us to check on arrangements for tomorrow. Rob and Sue are also heading up the locks in the morning, so we have lock buddies and will set off together. 
Our locking buddies for tomorrow

0 locks, 1100 ft, 550 in reverse, 550 forwards, 2 squeaky clean sides to Oleanna, 1 cat fight, 1 chimney swept, 1 empty wee tank, 1 full water tank, 1 surprised Pheasant, 1 pooped cat who has no idea what is to come in Sheffield! 1.75kg of pork roasting, this should last us a couple of weeks.

Enough for 8!

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