Thursday, 2 June 2011

Whitsun Break - Another Very Short Day

(Boats  Sickle & Chalice - posted by Alan)

Tied up at Bugbrooke - Some primer in evidence.
Continuing the same theme - move on a bit to try and recharge the batteries a bit, and to make some much needed hot water.  But spend time tied up, trying to get on with a bit of maintenance.

One bugbear was that throughout the towpath has remained on the left of the boats, giving little easy opportunity to work on the right hand side of either, (although Sickle would turn across the width of the cut in many places, assuming enough depth at either bank).

No chance of doing anything very complex but general cleaning, (there is a lot of brass will need polishing!), some paint touch up, plus trying to tighten a few things that are in danger of falling off!

"The fleet" tied up at Gayton service area.
One near crisis was averted, fortunately.  On the outward trip with Chalice we had badly needed to empty the boats toilet waste tanks, but when we arrived at the Gayton facility, we had found it locked, out of order.  There is no further public facility before Whilton, so by the time we arrived back at Gayton, we really hoped the problem would be fixed.  Fortunately it was, but we had only survived by breaking out a new "cassette" that was an emergency spare, and had never before been pressed into use.  Sorry to go into "toilet matters", but the ways of dealing with this on boats is one of the more argued about boat matters amongst actual boaters!  Those who favour a large "pump out" tank, rather thanthe "cassette" system we rely upon will be smirking at the fact we were nearly without a working loo!

Sat on "the patio", Chalice (behind) acting as support vessel.
At Blisworth Cath and I worked hard on various tidying work, and thought we would treat ourselves to a meal at the local pub.  Sadly it proved to be a case where the canal guide says evening food is available, but the reality is that it no longer is.  Anyway Charlie got a walk!  One of the uses of Sickle's boarded deck over the hold is that it can become our "floating patio" area.  Firstly I found that the wireless internet we use in Chalice had enough range to allow me to sit on the front of Sickle with my laptop, in the evening sun.  But of course it is also a perfect venue for a meal with a glass of wine or two.

Bugbrooke to Blisworth
Miles: 5.0, Locks:0

Total Miles: 59.2, Total Locks: 23

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