Bramble Cuttings (a very proud father)

I was really nervous on Wednesday morning as my youngest daughter, Polly, was retaking her driving test at 9 o’clock.  In the end I decided to start moving the boat to keep my mind occupied.  It didn’t work and I gave it until 10 before making contact.  My middle daughter, Lauren, had taken her so I sent Lauren a text asking her to tell Polly we would pay for the next test as she had obviously failed because there had been no contact. As I sent the text, Polly rang in fits of laughter – she had passed and was so happy.  So now all nine of our children have passed their driving tests.

Well done Polly – she even hugged the examiner and told him he was the best guy in the world!

The other aim of the morning’s cruise was to find somewhere where we could moor next to a road.  We are removing the washing machine and fridge on Friday and taking them to the boatyard to be fitted in the new boat.  I had a place in mind but knew only three boats could moor there.  When we turned up there was no room so I decided to temporarily moor further back and wait for a boat to move.  I was in luck and after an hour a boat moved off.  By mid-afternoon all the boats had gone and we were on our own; however, later on another boat did join us.

Moored with easy access to a road to get heavy things into the car

On the way we passed a marina that we have watched being built over the years.  When we last came past in April we had begun to think it was never going to open and that maybe the builders had gone bust.  Anyway, this time it was obvious that it had just opened as there were a few boats in there.

Plenty of room for more boats although those gulls must be making a mess of the pontoons

We also went through Billings Flash which was packed with moored boats enjoying the late September summer.
Not a very clear picture as I caught the sun I’m afraid

I’ve probably mentioned before that I take pictures of all milestones/markers/posts along the canals and rivers we travel.  The Trent & Mersey is particular good as the mileposts are recent (around mid 1970s) and very large and heavy so unlikely to get stolen.  They are all in place from Shardlow (near Nottingham) right up the 92 mile length to Preston Brook near Manchester. 

I passed four today and took pictures from the boat as we cruised past them.  Once we moored up I realised that none of them had come out so there was nothing for it but to cycle back and retake them all.  Buddy didn’t mind because it gave him a good run.

One of the mileposts we passed today
Many, like this one, have a plaque dedicating the sponsor of the post

I was surprised when the skies darkened and we had a hailstorm about four o’clock as only light clouds had been forecast.  Anyway, after it stopped I took Buddy out for another walk.  He wasn’t happy as it was so near his dinner time.  He kept stopping and just sitting on the towpath.  In the end I gave up after just over a mile (measured by mileposts) and let him come back home.

Thursday is going to be a day of clearing the boat out and getting ready for a week’s holiday in Scotland.

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