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Archive for March, 2012

Friday 16th March 2012

Woke up surprisingly early considering that we didn’t arrive at Aqueduct Marina until around midnight on Thursday, but we always travel down from Scotland in the evening so as not to waste a minute of our time on nbThat’s D’riculous. It was around 8.30am the sun was shinning in through the cream linen blinds in the bedroom & the marina was calm.

We got the rest of our stuff from the car, this time we brought down some favorite pictures that will be coming with us onto the boat with appropriate fixings to put pictures onto sloping walls! These will get put up over the weekend, meantime some breakfast & out of the Marina, heading towards Barrbridge.

Even though we arrived last night the boat still had a bit of a chill in her so we lit the stove as we were travelling getting inside aired & toastie. (that is smoke you can just see above the roof not mist!) As we went on the sky clouded over a bit but still very pleasant travelling. Caley our spaniel is now accompanying us on our trips so she can get used to boat life…….now, this is not going to be easy! In the canal twice today so we have decided that she must wear a harness (easier to fish out!) & be tied on deck until she realises that jumping in at EVERY available opportunity is not wise!

We moored up just before the aqueduct at Nantwich & decided to take Caley for a walk along the towpath, then back for a well deserved cuppa & a piece of rhubarb & custard cake. Hmmm lovely!

The sun was out again & the skies blue Lochaber sat at the dinette but unfortunately the sun got him!

Some 2hrs later we made dinner, watched a bit of TV had a few glasses of vino then to bed, won’t need that super new electric blanket tonight the boat is sooooo cosy!

Saturday 17th March 2012  

Caley woke us around 8.30am as she heard a couple of joggers running past chatting to each other, so we peaked out of the blinds to see more blue skies although patchy it was dry with intermittent sunshine, good enough for me!

Saturday is market day in Nantwich & as we have never been moored here on market day we decided to wander into town, I needed some batteries anyway as both clocks had stopped! The market was bustling had a Town Crier, not something you see every day.

It was a market worth visiting again, got my batteries & a great wee Bone China combined salt & pepper pot for the boat with a duck on it for only £4.50. Lochaber has to have coffee & cake every time we go somewhere so we chose McCormicks ther are numerous great coffee shops in Nantwich along with many bookshops & an abundance of independent shops all in a compact walking area, lovely way to waste an afternoon.

McCormicks was busy, coffee & cake very good. The walls of the coffee house are covered in a montage of black & white photos, you would need to refill your coffee numerous times to have a good look at them all.

Refreshed after our coffee stop. we wandered back to the market for a further look around & a meander around the narrow streets gazing in the designer shops! On the way back to the boat we stopped for a beer at The Oddfellows pub. We have been there before & will return every time we visit Nantwich, it is a great example of an old-fashioned independent pub, with great Real Ale, a good pint of Guiness & a very welcoming landlord, who know his trade well.

It was now around 3pm & we decided to move the boat across the aqueduct to the winding hole & head back towards Barrbridge for the night, a bit rainy but only a shower, dry by the time we reached a mooring just under the bridge at Barrbridge, just as we were pulling in to moor Caley decided to take the leap of almost death even though tethered & was therefore dangling over the side of the boat, the problem with a Spaniel with NO brains is that they NEVER learn! Moored safely, Spaniel hoisted from water all is now calm & a cuppa is well necessary!

Unfortunately back to marina tomorrow.

Sunday 18th March 2012

We heard very heavy rain on the roof throughout the night & wondered if we would be having a wet return to the marina on Sunday, but we were determined not to complain as the canals desperately need extra rainfall this spring, although the Cheshire area is not as bad as further down south & the Midlands.  When we awoke to the sound of the ducks  this was what awaited us outside.

The most beautiful sunday morning. So we decided to have some breakfast & make a move towards the marina, this is always the hardest time when we are only onboard for a short period of time, but the unexpected sunshine meant that we could take our time along the Middlewich Branch with only two locks to negotiate.

It is quite a busy stretch just out site Barrbridge, a couple of super boats for sale at Midway Boats. Very popular mooring spot along this stretch.

 

We cruised along slowly enjoying the spring sunshine towards Cholmondeston Lock.

 

 

Caley the spaniel was by now tethered on the deck with me, she had driven us mad all weekend with her continual diving into the cut, so she was not happy when we descended into the lock, water gushing all around her!

Next was Minshull Lock, last one before the marina. The nb coming through was flying the Cornish Flag! Good man!

 

 

So, here we are again back at Aqueduct, very light wind today, so getting into the mooring was unusually easy today. Just as we were about to leave after cleaning the boat & packing the car & of course the obligatory cappuccino in The Galley we saw an airship  above the marina.

 

A picturesque end to a lovely weekend.

 

 

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Monday 5th March 2012

A beautiful day today even though it is the start of another working week.  Tweeting to the nb folk everyday makes me miss our boat even more, can’t wait to get down again.

The sunrise was spectacular today.

The snow drops were in full bloom in the park in Dundee, had to just stop for a quick photo or two as they will be gone so soon.

Tuesday 6th March 2012

My job takes me all over NE Scotland & I see some fantastic scenery & meet some great people/chefs.

Today I met with a new customer at a new purpose-built Bistro on the edge of an existing fishing loch in the heart of rural Perthshire.  The loch is of scientific & natural interest apparently as a rare algae lives in the bottom. Every fishing dinghy has an electric outboard they are not allowed petrol/diesel on the loch. It is a pleasure to make calls like this one.

The Loch is restocked with full size trout TWICE a week, good fishing to be had here!

Wednesday 7th March 2012

This was another of my regular trips to Peterhead. Below is the front of the fish market with one of the super high tech trawlers in the background.

On the way back through Aberdeen via the sea front I had to stop & snap these guys trying to catch a wave!! It WAS sunny but still bloody cold, they must be mad!

Saturday 10th March 2012

I haven’t blogged much cos’ we’ve only been doing the very mundane work thing & have not managed to get back to the boat yet.

However the weather forecast is very good for Scotland this weekend so we are going to do a carboot sale to add some dosh to the “Canal Fund” this is basically our little piggy bank we are trying to build up this year to buy some essentials we need for the nb to become our home, a cratch & cover for the “pointy end” & a wind turbine/solar panels for extra energy to save running the engine & using expensive fuel.

Sunday 11th March 2012

The weather was as promised bright, sunny & about 16c although it was a bit windy, but hey that’s all part of the fun of carboot sales….isn’t it? It was a good day after allowing for stall fee we cleared £105 !! As you can see Lochaber was enjoying every minute of the day!

It was an early start, so 1.30pm it’s off home for a shower & a snooze!

Looking forward to next Thursday evening as we will be travelling to Aqueduct Marina for long weekend on the boat.

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