Slat Mill Lock to Cropredy Marina
Not far today. First we rose up Slat Mill Lock infront of us and then pootled along the pound into Cropredy. There was something missing, well quite a few things missing. Firstly we only saw one canoe out on the water, secondly where have all the cows gone? Normally along here the cows are so noisy they keep you awake at night wading in the canal! But not one was to be seen in the fields today.
When we’d moored up yesterday we received a C&RT notice saying that Cropredy Water point was out of action due to vandalism. It was a good job we’d reversed back to the water point in Banbury yesterday. If the weather had continued getting colder we could have found ourselves iced in and running out of water. But we had a full tank and the weather was warming up so no problem there.
Cropredy Lock and I noticed something was missing here also. The little toy dog that sat in the white picket fence is no longer there. Hopefully it’s owner has reclaimed it and not just a passerby picking it up. I was a touch disappointed though as it was there each time we passed through the lock last year. I had a good hunt round to see if it had been moved to somewhere else, but no. I may have to buy a new dog for the next time we are here and leave it tucked in the fence again.
New additions to the lock cottage were sandbags and planks around the fencing. When we had all the rain a few weeks ago the levels of the canal were affected, so these must have been positioned here then to try to help protect the cottage from unwanted water.
Not much further until we turned into Cropredy Marina. Of course the wind built itself up today because it knew we’d be pulling in here! Wonderful gusty wind too, just perfect for manoeuvring around a large open space, not!
We pulled onto the service mooring letting the wind push us into the side, a fat fender at the ready as some of the timber edging was missing and large bolts were sticking out. We headed straight into the office where we were given a warm welcome. The lady gave us a choice of berths all close to the entrance and services. I chose the one that would suit Tilly the most with no track for vehicles right by the boat.
We were asked to pull in bow first as the edges of the marina are all soft and reedy, we’d noticed everyone was facing the same way. After parting with some money we reversed Oleanna back quite a distance into the marina. The wind was doing it’s best to push us off course, but Mick gave Oleanna a good run up to slot into our chosen berth.
Well this is a funny outside! Just how many boats does it take to tie it up?! Hundreds! I had to check a few to see that they were holding onto it, they all were. Not surprising as it was very blowy out there, it got right up my bum!
There’s some friendly cover, but it all looked suspiciously like it would end up being a wet pounce if I found anyone so I refrained. A couple of interesting trees too, but they were on the other side of a very little canal. I did calculations but very quickly concluded that the little canal might be little but it was too big for my pouncing capabilities. So instead I kept Tom and She busy coming and going. For some reason they didn’t want me using the back door, I didn’t see a problem in it.
Mid afternoon Mick headed off in a taxi. This afternoon there was a reunion in London for the Lloyds Bank telecoms department where Mick used to work. So he headed off to catch the train, leaving Tilly and myself in charge of the washing machine. As electric is included in our mooring fee we will be washing everything whilst here. The stove will be allowed to go out and the Alde boiler will use the electric to heat the boat.
We’ve been busy packing presents and finishing off my Christmas knitting. I’m one pair of socks down on what I wanted to achieve, but my Etsy order must come first. I may just have enough time to do one more pair before the last post, we’ll see.
2 locks, 1.76 miles, 1 left, 1 big reverse, 0 cows, 1 hook up, 1 refill of water, 3 loads washing, 1 load drying, 2 many boats for Tilly, 1 clean pooh box, 1 taxi, 2 trains, 1st sweet potato wedges, 1 good view of the pooh sucky machine.