Friday, 30 April 2010

Walford Arm To Market Harborough.

1 Tunnel And The Foxton Staircase.

Huge monsters and the rain is upon us once more.

A quick pirouette at the junction yesterday in brilliant sunshine and the other side of Ubique was soon polished up.
Painting and followed, but then the good old English weather did what the good old English weather does best......poured with rain.
The whole lot ruined in one fell swoop.

Today was another bright and sunny day, ideal for repairing the damage done yesterday, but once bitten twice shy. We were having none of it........... so we set off for Leeds.

A very green and tree lined canal through here. We had a quick stop for Diesel at the first boatyard we came across. No coal boats plying their wares around here..... unfortunately.

Husbands Bosworth tunnel was short, fairly dry, empty of other boats and very straight. All in all a bit of a doddle.

The Foxton Staircase was soon reached and we were lucky enough to book the last slot of the day from this end. The two boats that followed us to the top lock would have to wait until tomorrow.

This was quite surprising as it was only half past two in the afternoon.

Five locks down and at the cross over point was when the heavens opened up once again. Thank goodness we decided to move on or another load of paintwork would have been ruined.

Here's the very inauspicious entrance/exit of the bottom lock. We were helped down the first few locks by the lock keeper but then left to our own devices. Not too sure if this was due to the weather turning though!!!

A stop the traffic swing bridge, one of D's favourite things. This one though proved to be a real problem, would it move? no it wouldn't.

Handily a Sir Galahad came along before I could get Ubique alongside to help, lots of pushing between them later and.......... hey presto it was open.

Location, location location. A bit of a classic here.
Off to the market here tomorrow, lets hope it's a good one.

Crunchie met some huge grey monsters yesterday. Some things are just soooo funny, a horse and a cat meeting one another is one of those things.

Until next time....................


Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Welford....... Staying Put.

Spit and polish with the odd Goose.

Today was a good day for clearing the winter away from Ubique. The polishing machine was out alongside the Brasso and a nice shiny boat has been revealed. Well...... one side at least.

Here are a few more pictures of our trip up the Watford staircase.

D has just stopped the man in the lock above from trying to be helpful and refilling the one she is just emptying. It was his first time in a staircase and he was not quite up to speed......bless.

Towering locks here,

worked under towering Sky's.

Squeezing Ubique ever upwards.

Someone couldn't care less though.
She is a lot more settled here aboard than back at the house for some reason. She has even brought us a Mouse today, we didn't really want a mouse but we got one all the same.

Are you ready?

Aaaaaaa, a proud old mum showing off her brood.

This sort of thing always brings a smile.
A big old masculine bridge carrying the high speed rail link over the canal at Watford Gap, and what do they do to it?........ Paint it pink!

Ready again?

Canada Geese this time, sitting on the towpath as we walked along.
Little bundles of fur on legs that they are.

Safely away.

Until next time............................................


Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Norton Junction To Yelvertoft, Then Off To The Welford Arm.

Eeee.......... its right good to be back.

Arriving at Norton Junction the other day we could not even see the side of the canal let alone moor on it. So many weekenders anchored up at the pub, that does seem a bit of a waste on the boating side of things. A beautiful cruising day spent sat in the pub with the boat tied up out side.

Still, they had all cleared away by the morning and our Tesco delivery arrived in the first fifteen minutes of our two hour slot, so away we went.

The colours out here at the moment are glorious.

Up the Watford staircase once more and then through the Crick tunnel,

and on to our mooring for the night.

What a mooring it was, so very, very quiet. No traffic noise or people wandering about, just the sounds of nature........Bliss.

A very short Blog today as the reception here at Welford is as much use as a chocolate teapot.
This bit has taken two hours already.

Until next time.........................


Sunday, 25 April 2010

Whilton Marina To Norton Junction. 7 Locks.

Out with the flags, pop the corks and turn up the music........We are back on board.

Another van full of stuff somehow squeezed, liquidised and then packed into our long suffering good friends car, then we were off.

A scant few hours later Neil and Sharon had us back at Ubique. As soon as the luggage was aboard the engine was checked and started, all systems were brought back on line, and the ropes were off. The Marina was soon left far behind in our wake.

Next stop.............who cares? Anywhere will do on the canals.

Neil is definitely a natural at this, steering into an occupied double lock and not touching the sides or the other boat is not to be sniffed at.

A month away and everything is so green now. A far cry from when we left.

Not too friendly looking here, the fuse wasn't smoking though so it seemed safe to pass.

Theres always time for a beer in the cratch on a sunny day.

Thanks once again you two, see you soon.

Until next time.........................


Friday, 23 April 2010

Brick House, Day 27.

If you would like someone to strangle the moron at the end of this line.............
.......Please press six.

Back to the boat tomorrow, what a rollercoaster ride that was.

The house is now straight again, new tenants found and ready to move in. All that was left to do was cancel the Direct Debits and change the bills into the new name.

The day started well enough with a quick trip to the bank. The highly fragranced ball of face powder that was the teller, set her nail extensions to good use on the keyboard and ten minutes later all was cancelled and the world was a happy place.

It was all downhill from there on though.

The Gas, Electricity and Water companies....... no problem.
Council tax and TV Licence........Bit of a pain, but resolved after they held a hoop up for us and we repeatedly jumped through it until they were happy.

Then it came to cancelling our home Broadband package, 2 HOURS of mind numbing explanations to no less than SIX different..... "people"?? telling them over and over again, no we don't want to switch our account, no, we are not moving abroad, we are moving aboard our boat, no we don't want another package, no its not another house its a boat, and so it went on and on and on.

Back to sanity tomorrow.

Until next time...........................


Saturday, 17 April 2010

Brick Home, Day 21.

The Next Highlight Was The Trip Up The Llanggollen And
Passing Over "That" Aqueduct.
It All Starts Here.
Everything seems to be on track for us to be able to return to Ubique by next week.
Fingers and everything else crossed.
Until next time...........................


Sunday, 11 April 2010

Brick Home, Day 15.

To the town!!!!

Realising that in the twenty odd years I have lived here I have never actually ridden the bus into town, today was going to be a “first”.

A few stops after we went aboard the bus it was packed out with standing room only. This is when I likened it to a cattle truck and started mooing under my breath, that got me a dig in the ribs and a quick telling off.
Three elderly Bovines got on at the next stop, and one of these was having considerable difficulty standing up.

This was due to the Wing Commander who was piloting this brightly painted truck having lots of trouble taking off.
We hurtled from pot hole to pot hole but the No 6 would not fly.
It was then that I rather incautiously offered my seat to the struggling one……….. If the engine had not been screaming fit to explode as Biggles tried once more to get us airborne, I swear you would have heard a pin drop.
A withering look that was more of a slap in the face and meant “How old do you think I am?” was followed by a very curt refusal. Ooops!

Then it was over, our stop was reached. This, as it turned out was to be everyone else’s stop as well. Morphing from cattle to sheep, we all flocked out of the truck onto the High Street. Another dig in the ribs quickly followed my Baaaing.

I think in future, I might just walk…………..

Until next time..........................


Wednesday, 7 April 2010

Brick Home.

Day 11.

I thought I would list the canals we have been on over the last year and wonder just how we managed that.

Starting from Whilton Marina on the Grand Union, and not doubling up we have been on:

The Grand Union (Obviously).
The Northhampton arm.
The Stratford Upon Avon Canal.
The Worcester And Birmingham Canal.
The River Severn.
The Staffordshire And Worcester Canal.
The Shropshire Union Canal.
The Llanggollen Canal.
The Trent And Mersey Canal.
The Weaver Navigations.
The Bridgewater Canal.
The Leeds And Liverpool Canal.
The Aire and Calder Navigations.
The Selby Canal.
The Calder And Hebble Navigation.
The Huddersfield Wide Canal.
The Huddersfield Narrow Canal. (Our favourite)
The Ashton Canal.
The Peak Forest Canal.
The Macclesfield Canal.
The Birmingham And Fazeley Canal.
The Birmingham Canal Navigations. (Some of)
The South Oxford Canal.
The Oxford canal.
The Coventry Canal.
The Ashby Canal.
And lastly the Leicester Arm Of The Grand Union.

Wow, when you see it put down like that it does make you think!
All of that at three miles an hour!!!

Whilst It is all reflections at the moment, these two comments top our list.

Small child in a group at Gas Street Basin after being told that we live aboard the boat.

Why would anyone live on a canoe..................? Don't you just love em.

Sam, Our Daughter.

I am not getting out of this bed until I cant see my breath.

Until next time............................................


Thursday, 1 April 2010

Brick Home.

Day 9.

Here is the first of the highlights of our last years trip.

After cutting our teeth on the Hatton and Tardebigge flights we arrived at,

The Anderton Boat Lift.
The Blog of this trip starts Here

The rain was bad that day, very bad. But it didn't dampen our enthusiasm.

Its quite something to see.

The locks along the navigation are huge, built for very large ships.

One end was taken up by an enormous chemical plant that looked fantastic when it was lit up at night. It seemed to go on for miles.

This Church eerily finished one half of the trip. These churches were built by the Navvies (Navigators) who dug the canals. This one has been left in the middle of an Eddie Stobart transport yard.

Until next time....................