Friday, 17 June 2016

Welsh Road (two more firsts for the year)

Skies cleared on Thursday afternoon

Well what another couple of wet days we’ve had!  On Wednesday it was on with the wet weather gear as Buddy and I needed to get some supplies and had a three mile walk to the Co-op in Long Itchington.  Once we arrived at the village the rain started to ease and it looked hopeful that the sun even may appear. When I tied Buddy up outside the shop there was a lead already there but with no dog attached.  I had fun imagining the different reasons that that may have happened.

Buddy unaware there was an invisible dog next to him

Whenever we walk into Long Itch, as it is known by the locals, I am always tempted to knock on the door of the house in the picture below.  I want to introduce myself as a local historian writing a book on the history of the village.  I would ask them if I could take a picture of their house for the book and ask them if they had any idea or clues as to when it was built.

The house where I always want to knock on the door

The rain had stopped when we left the village so I decided to go back via the butterfly reserve at Bascote.  The sun wasn’t out but it was warm enough to bring out a few butterflies.  I was rewarded with my first Large Skipper and Meadow Brown of the year but didn’t manage to get any pictures.  We have now seen 20 different species so far this year which is rather pleasing considering we haven’t had to take a car and make special journeys.

Buddy and cows ‘staring each other out’ at a bridge at Bascote cutting

I mentioned the other day how the old single width locks on this section of the Grand Union canal are used as overspill weirs alongside the double width locks.  Here are a couple of pictures of them in operation:

Welsh Road lock – the overspill weir is on the left – we are currently moored just above this lock

Bascote bottom lock – the overspill weir is on the right this time

Thursday looked even worse than Wednesday, rain-wise, as it was pouring hard when Karen went off to work.
Opening the cratch cover first thing on Thursday morning

Undeterred, Buddy and I went to discover yet another unclassified/unadopted road.  Trouble was the water was often right across the road and the only option was to walk through it.  Buddy is so funny as he will avoid getting his feet wet if he can and will skip round puddles.  But if he has no choice he seems to think, “What the hell?” and goes ploughing through.  His favourite trick when we get home is to stand in the galley and shake which covers the units etc. in mud splatters.  This is even though he gets a good towelling down before getting on the boat.

Very wet walk

We haven't seen a kingfisher for about two months since we've been on the seven mile stretch of canal between Calcutt and Radford Semele. I was getting worried as we normally see one most days elsewhere on the system.  I was really pleased on Thursday though as I finally saw one at Bascote; albeit it was timid and I couldn’t keep up with it.

The sun finally came out later on Thursday afternoon and it was really still as can be seen by the picture at the top of the page.  In the evening we went to Stratford for our weekly bridge night with friends.

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