A Bright Flash. 26th December

Radford Smelly to Cape of Good Hope

Yesterday we had bathroom doors not able to shut due to the amount of heat the sun was providing on the starboard side. Sadly today this wasn’t going to be the case as it was raining before we got up and it stayed a damp grey day. Just a day to go cruising!

What a grey day

I’d woken with images of my sour dough starter having taken over the cabin overnight. But it was still contained to the proving shelf and when I looked into the bowl it hadn’t done anything over night. I swapped out the cabbage leaves for newer ones and fed it, hoping things would improve. Unfortunately nothing happened to it all day, so it was another failed attempt. But this one definitely has worked the best, maybe if I’d fed it with the right quantities whilst sober. I’ve certainly not given up yet. It will have to wait now until I return from Vienna, as I don’t want to leave the responsibility of feeding it to Mick whilst I’m away. It does mean we’ll have to have some more braised cabbage on my return, oh dear, never mind!


Time to make a move. We pootled up to the winding hole, winded and headed back into town. Past the cat and water point and pulled in by Morrisons. We’ve visitors coming so needed a few things. Many of the shelves were bare, Christmas cakes were reduced and a huddle stood round waiting for the price reduction of the turkeys. One lady infront of us at the checkout had three birds and other stuff, her bill around £25! Well that’s certainly worth waiting for. If only our freezer was bigger.

Feline canal observers

Back at the boat, as we rolled back the covers a blue boat came past. It had been moored in town with us and then was the only moving boat yesterday. The chap at the helm said they’d had to turn round as the kids (presumably grand kids) had managed to block the toilet with paper. Their maserator hadn’t appreciated it! What a lovely thing to sort on Boxing Day! Maybe we’d be sharing the locks with him and his blocked loo.

No trains today

My new coat did a good job the drizzle preferring to roll off it than soak into it. I may be able to fit an extra layer under it after all the Christmas food and chocolate have become memories.

At Tesco’s we passed the blue boat. With McDonalds as well as Tescos, they had plenty of shore based facilities until the toilet gets sorted. We left him to see if reversing the macerator would help unblock it.

Moored boats

All was quiet at the boat yards, Kate Hire base had one car in the car park. Nowhere to get any gas, we still have a brand new bottle so we’ll be fine for a while, even if we need to use it for heating. Having guests means the sofa will be used as a bed, the stove is too close for this to be safe so we’ll let it burn out.


Below the two Cape Locks a Kingfisher darted in front of us, brightening up the day no end. Then at the top lock a big boxer dog came to say hello and provided my new coat with it’s first mud.

Cape Bottom Lock

We’d expected a few boats to be moored here, but we seem to be the only ones. It’s most probably because the TV signal is poor again! Tomorrow we’ll pull back and top up with water and await the arrival of our first visitors.

2 locks, 4.85 miles, 1 wind, 0 turkeys for us, 1 wee tank, 75% off turkeys, 3 packs of bacon, 1 loaf bread, 3rd starter destined for the bin, 1st left overs meal, 1 damp drizzly day, 2 late for Tilly, 1 Kingfisher.


6 thoughts on “A Bright Flash. 26th December

  1. Anonymous

    It always makes for a good day when you see a kingfisher.
    And a blocked macerator bog……been there……done that……not nice!
    We’ve started to take our new cat to the boat when we’ve been aboard, he seems to enjoy it.
    Have you got to Lapworth yet? Lock 20 was still broken when we were there before Christmas but it isn’t a problem, just go through into the basin by the services and turn right to go up Lock 21 if you’re heading for Brum.
    Happy New Year to you all.
    NB ‘Red Wharf’
    PS We call it Radford Smelly too!

    1. pipandmick Post author

      Thank you Sam for the heads up at Lock 20. Happy New Year to you too, maybe we’ll see you out and about somewhere neat year.

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