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Thursday, 26 June 2014

You learn something new ...

After a pretty non eventful trip up the Trent and the canals and rivers heading north we have arrived in York. We have both been here before but have decided to stay for a while as there is so much to see and do. Plus the Tour de France starts from here next weekend and we are in a prime position on the river to see it! So a week or more in York. 
The tidal rivers are not that interesting as the banks are built up for flood protection  so you don't see much of the surrounding countryside. We passed the time by looking out for the elusive kingfisher. I thought I saw one or two around Harefield last year but couldn't be sure. This time, on the River Ouse, we had four definite sightings. We even saw a nest on an branch overhanging the river. Never thought I would get excited about seeing birds! 
An interesting fact for the day came from a CRT man who works on the dredging boats. He was talking about finding dead bodies in the river. Apparently men float face down with the upper back out of the water. Women also float face down bit with their backside out of the water. Any ideas why??

Tuesday, 17 June 2014

Back on the water

After almost a month we are back on the waterways. As well as the cutlass bearing and shaft we also needed a new engine mount and a new propeller. So all done now together with some extra sign writing and  a freshly blacked bottom she looks like new and sounds so much quieter. 
Since leaving Nottingham we have made lot of progress. We were on the river Trent for a few days and the current and wind pushed us along nicely. Now we know how fast she can go! We took a short detour down part of the Chesterfield canal then back on the Trent to the Keadby/ Stainforth canal and now on the New Junction Canal heading for York. 
It was great to welcome our first on board visitor of the season, Mike Sugden, who we met on our trip to Vietnam and who now feels like a lifelong friend! Hope you had fun Mike. 
So that's the good news. 
The bad news is that John almost certainly needs a operation on his shoulder. During the weeks of painting in Oldham and working on the boat his shoulder has become increasingly painful. He is due to see a specialist and have an MRI scan next Monday. So this is the thing. If he has the operation his arm will be held out at 45 degrees in a sling which is going to make boating a bit of a challenge. This means we will have to stay put unless we can recruit some competent crew! Any friends/relatives reading this who would like a free boating holiday in return for some help with locks etc please get on touch. We don't really want to stop for too long and miss the summer. 
Here's a few photos to wet your appetite!