Braunston (and now we can relax)

Turning into Braunston marina for a pump out

I knew we were low on water and it ran out just as Karen finished showering on Wednesday morning (luckily she had finished!).  Unbeknownst to me she left me a cake, a gift and a card on the dinette table as it was my birthday – a lovely surprise when I got up.

Birthday treats from Karen

My main job of the day was to get to Braunston so we could take on water and then continue onto the marina to get a pump out.

After a couple of miles Braunston church spire appeared through the mist so I knew we were nearly there. 

Braunston church spire

As we spent from February to August this year cruising up and down between Braunston and Leamington Spa it felt like we were nearly home again.  We tended to move every two weeks at that time but with a smaller water tank we may have to move more often in order to make sure it doesn’t run out again.

Taking on water with Buddy playing his favourite sport, 'Kill that branch'

We joined the Grand Union canal at Braunston Junction and headed east towards the marina.

We haven’t got used to how warm the new boat gets yet and often end up being far too warm.  The stove seems a lot more efficient than our old one and, coupled with having good insulation, getting the adjustments wrong can make us too cosy.  Anyway, we’ll get used to it and it’s not like it’s cold weather yet.  I’m sure we’ll have it sorted out by the time the snow and ice come this winter.

It’s always fun driving through Braunston as there are lots of moored boats and boats on the move.

Cruising past the Boathouse pub

We went past Nicola’s boat Martha; she has permanent moorings in the centre but didn’t appear to be on board today.  No doubt we will catch up with her over the next few days.

After visiting the marina we went back down towards the junction and moored at the last spot available right at the end.

Moored under a large ash tree sheeding its leaves

Trouble was we were under trees and therefore in shadow so not much good for the solar panels.  I have been really impressed with the power they generate.  I know we have had lots of sun lately but they seem to do well even when it’s cloudy.  They generate enough power to keep the fridge and freezer going constantly as well as lights and TV in the evening and also charging phones and laptops.  We have taken care to convert as much as we can to 12 volt so that helps too. The washing machine is 240 volt and draws a lot of power so we tend to run it when we're cruising. I have to remember that the panels can’t heat the water so if we are stationary all day I have to run the engine for a while in the evening to make sure we have hot water the next day.

We went for a walk in the afternoon and then popped up to the butchers in the village to get some supplies.  When I came to pay I realised I had no cash or cards with me but the butcher let me take everything and said I could pay him tomorrow: one of the benefits of getting to know and being known by the locals.

Returning from our walk we could see our mooring from the opposite direction.  I love the iron bridges on the North Oxford canal.

Looking out the dinette waiting for Karen to walk across the bridges as she was due home from work early

When Karen got home we walked up to the Admiral Nelson to celebrate my birthday.

Looking the worse for wear and I had only just started my first drink!

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