Here we are on a beautiful Monday moored near Fenny Compton on a 14 day mooring.
It has been an eventful few days even tho we have only managed to move a relatively short distance.
We enjoyed a couple of drinks with Chris and Jim on Thursday night before a reasonably early night. We set off from Banbury with our goal to make Cropredy on Friday night. We also decided to catch up with the washing before availing ourselves of the water refilling facilities at Cropredy. In the process we learnt a valuable lesson – schedule tasks before or after travel rather than during, or at least one member of the crew misses out on all the beautiful scenery!!! As a result it is not possible to share any of our experience of this stretch other than that we went through 4 locks and arrived in Cropredy somewhat stressed and rushing to complete the laundry before refilling, trying to get the rubbish and elsan ready for disposal, and hurrying through the whole process so that the Canal and River Trust personnel could fill the work barge we were moored to, with sand and rocks to continue their day’s work. We did however find a very nice mooring and prepared to rethink our travel/task strategy.
On Saturday we set off for a walk around the very small town and managed to buy a straight edged sharp knife from a lovely little antique store – its purpose is to cut the foam to make porthole buns. We also sussed out the local store, site of the Cropredy battle, and 2 local pubs, before returning to the boat to give the interior a very good clean. Not sure what Bob was doing during this time but he does know how to make himself scarce while Bron gets on with the inside tasks!!!!
We had just put away the craft project and were thinking about making dinner when Bob let Bron know that someone was taking advantage of our chairs placed on the towpath so that we could enjoy the sunshine. There were our friends, Julia and Malcolm, who had been following our progress through carefully worded text messages received as and when we had phone coverage. They had taken a punt on us still being there and had traveled from their home moorings in Calcutt to surprise us. We had a great time, lots of laughs and dinner at the local pub before fare-welling them again. These two are a real tonic and both of us felt buoyed by the visit.
Canal life is wonderful and we have no real desire to stop it. But it can mean that you sorely miss your family and friends and occasionally benefit from the lift that a visit or some contact gives you!!!
Renewed in spirit we set off on Sunday morning aiming to cover off on the remaining 8 locks before reaching the summit of the Oxford Canal. We had only finished 3 before the showers became rain so we hastily moored while we let it pass. Its always time for a cuppa!!!!
The sun emerged again and we covered off on the Claydon lock flight quite quickly and then progressed to moorings in Fenny Compton. A lovely spot – you can still hear the train which is a fairly constant presence alongside the canal system – ideal for a break and to avail ourselves of the hairdresser that operates from the local pub (along with a laundry, spice/herb and vegetable shop, and more expected bup food and drinks!!!!).
So today we are all clean, all jobs are up to date, we have been trimmed and our friends Chris and Jim have just arrived and moored nearby.
All is good with the world!!! No photos for this posting – I will add them to the next……