Black Jack Lock to Debham Bridge 182
Today we had a lunch appointment, but before that we had a lock and about a mile to cruise.
The lock cottage below Black Jacks Lock is for sale, I’m not sure if the asking price includes the crocodile or not, or will that be moving elsewhere. Hope the new owner gives us something as amusing to look at. Details of the house are here.
Last night we did well to resist the walk up the hill to The Old Orchard, a very nice pub with great views and very good food. But we knew we’d be eating out today so refrained.
After about a mile we pulled in above Wide Water Lock, I had a quick shower and then we put on none boating clothes and walked into Denham. This is where an old colleague of Mick’s lives. Mick was Les’s apprentice way back in his GPO days. They have kept in touch through the years and getting on for five years ago Les and Maureen came to see us on Lillian when we passed through Uxbridge, bringing a very nice cake with them.
There was lots to catch up on whilst admiring their beautiful garden. Then we jumped in the car and headed round the corner to Denham Garden Village. This is a rather smart retirement village, with a spa and cafe bar. Denham Film Studios used to be on this site where films such as Brief Encounter and David Lean’s Great Expectations were made.
The cafe bar was very inviting and here we all opted for the carvery, which was one of the best roasts we’ve had (other than on Oleanna!) in a long while. Mick had his first pint of London Pride too as the conversation flowed on.
A quick spin around Denham Village itself, passing Robert Lindseys house and where John Mills used to live, a very pretty village. It was a shame that we had other things to do rather than have a walk. Les and Maureen dropped us back off at the lock and promised that they would visit us later in the year when we’re in Banbury.
The pound had dropped whilst we had been out. Our friends Sam and Becca had moored here when they were moving their boat back to London last year, we’d been a bit bemused when we heard that they were stuck, grounded. But now we understood, this pound needs to have the lock totally closed with all it’s paddles closed. Both top and bottom gates must leak and the pound above despite being about a mile long can drain overnight.
We moved off, away from the gravel works on the other side of the hedge and made our way down the lock to find a shady place. Just past where there had been an HS2 protest camp a couple of years ago we found a length long enough and deep enough for us to pull into in the shade. A perfect place for a barbecue, but we were still too full from lunch.
Next we had to turn our attention to emails to do with our house in Scarborough. Tenants, who’d have them! It also looks like we’ll have to hold off buying boxes of wine for a while as one of the showers needs a new surround, that’s another months rent vanishing before we get it.
2 locks, 2.22 miles, 1 hungry crocodile, 2 old friends, 3 hours reminiscing about telephones, 2 glasses of wine, 2 pints Pride, 4 roast beefs, 4 hours shore leave, 2 many tenants opinions, 1 new toilet and shower, 2nd sleeve started, 2 slices of cheese on toast.