Tuesday, 31 May 2016

… and that special boat arrives

 Our mooring at Teddington where the weir sluices are being updated
 Saturday in the warm sunshine on the River Thames and ...
… Chris and his lovely terrier Stanley bring us fuel
Sunday we were out for a walk but it was a bit chilly!
… but the sunset was spectacular!

And today, the boat we’ve been waiting for arrived … no it wasn’t Sue and Vic on No Problem XL … it’s Ann and Kevin on our first/previous boat, the very special 

Rock ’n’ Roll

They arrived safely this morning off the tideway in the pouring rain with grandson Sam and friend Will and once moored up came to inspect Still Rockin and have a catchup.

This was the last time I saw Rock ’n’ Roll on March 6th 2014 ...
… Ann and Kev taking her away from Droitwich Marina.
… so it’s great to see them and RnR again …
Looking forward to travelling with them.

Sunday, 29 May 2016

Saturday and another change of plan!

We spent Saturday morning catching up with last minute jobs whilst all the services were readily available, last load of washing, ironing (the sun replenishing the batteries via the solar panels), emptying the toilets, topping up the water tank and getting rid of the rubbish.
 … and watching the wildlife in the basin.

Cruising the River Brent under the road bridge below the gauging lock

… and of course we met another boat coming towards us on a bend!

Lots of dutch barges down here
Moored up at Thames Lock, the River Thames is a short distance beyond the bridge and locks.  The Environment Agency is replacing the gates on the right-hand lock so we’ll use the other one.  George suggested that instead of waiting perhaps we should go on the early evening tide; initially I said no, but after thinking about it (I have butterflies in my stomach each time we go on the Thames) and I realised that I wouldn’t sleep well tonight thinking of the trip so I relented.  When the lock keeper arrived we were told that we’d go through onto the river at 6-pm.  I prepared this evening’s veg and put the meat in the oven on slow for when we arrived at Teddington.
An Egyptian Goose - ugly creature indeed! We whiled away the afternoon on the stern deck in the very warm sunshine reading.
Exiting Thames Lock at 17:55
This photo flummoxed us when we saw it; neither of us could remember two men standing opposite talking to each other!!  It is of course a reflection in the deep shine of Still Rockin’ as I look back when leaving the lock.
George is now a very, very happy man!
The River Thames ahead, we will turn to the right being careful  to take the corner wide so that the tide coming from the left doesn’t push us onto the wall.

Left to the City of London and right to Teddington
Molly in her cruising position
… and a beaming George!

Syon House on the left and Isleworth on the right

Approaching Richmond half-tide Lock and footbridge
… where a trip boat comes past us
… and Port of London vessels are moored

… next come Twickenham road and rail bridges
Approaching Richmond riverside pubs
… always busy on a sunny evening … fantastic!

We soon got entangled with a Regatta going on through Twickenham, we needed eyes in the back of our heads to see all that was going on around us
… and that trip boat is getting ever nearer
We know that Teddington Lock is not too far away when we see this group of buildings

The Yarmouth Belle overtakes us in mid-channel, he wants to be at the lock before us!

Happy rowers here too
I walk through SR to the bow as we approach the lock landing I note the time
… Yarmouth Belle takes up the whole of the landing so we ‘hover’ just behind
lots going on in the still warm sunshine
now it’s our turn to wait on the landing
… and it’s nearly half past seven when we tie up in Teddington Lock
Looking back in the lock as we rise from the tidal river level
Teddington moorings look rather full but we did manage to get a space by asking a small narrowboat to move back a couple of yards.  A really good trip which kept me busy pointing out potential hazards to George - it made me forget all those butterflies. A much better trip than we had in 2015 when it was dull, cold and very, very windy!

It didn’t take long to cook our meal which was delicious washed down with a glass or two of the vino collapso!

We’ll stay here at least until Tuesday because a rather special boat is coming to meet us … watch this space!