Sunday (26th) was a great day for us ... our first visitor onboard since lockdown ... our son Mark came to visit and stay overnight ... it was wonderful!
The following morning ...
we took down the windbreak, pulled the mooring pins and left our mooring of three months at Medmenham Meadow, turning to head downstream ...
First lock since the end of October 2019 at Hurley where Mark is waiting to open sluices to let us down ...
There's another boat waiting to use the lock so we don't need to close the sluices and gates.
Arriving at Temple Lock where a single-hander is in the lock and I see him through and set the lock for us ...
Lucky again ... here comes another boat so we hop back on board leaving the gates open
Cruising through Bisham. I phoned ahead to see what the situation was with the moorings at our destination and had been told by Sue, No Problem that the moorings at Bourne End were full ... oh nooo!
and approaching Marlow church and bridge ... I love this scene!
We pull in at the lock landing and although the self service sign was showing there appeared to be someone operating the locks, he turned out to be an EA (Environment Agency) worker, not the lock keeper.
Waiting at Marsh Lock Marlow
There were two cruisers coming towards us so using the zoom on my camera I had a look to see what was going on at our proposed mooring and could see that there was just one boat there now but right in the middle. Fortunately a few minutes after pulling along- side No Problem the boat left and we were able to moor up.
I would love to live here.
Later in the day I could see something that appeared to be stopped in mid-channel ... not sure what it is but it certainly wouldn't go through a lock like that!
Noisy geese, I hope they don't hang about for long!
So, what next for George and me?
We're currently packing up Still Rockin' and will move all our belongings to our little bungalow in Loggerheads tomorrow (Friday 31st July). We will return here afterwards to clean through the boat and do some last minute little jobs and on Tuesday 4th August will take Still Rockin' to Tingdene's Thames and Kennet Marina in Reading to be put into brokerage so that we can get on with our new adventure.
So, what is our new adventure I hear you ask?
We're going to retire!
When we decided to retire from paid employment way back in 2006 we wanted to 'get out of the rat race' and do something different ... to go boating ... and what a wonderful time we've had over the years both on our narrowboat Rock 'n' Roll and widebeam Still Rockin'.
So now ... we want to experience retirement from the land.
We've purchased a car and rented a property, and when Still Rockin' has sold will buy a property hopefully somewhere in the Midlands not too far from a canal so that we can meet up with some of our blogging/ boating friends and maybe help them through a few locks.
Having a car will enable us to explore the countryside, visit National Trust properties and non-blogging/boating relatives and friends (we both come from Stoke-on-Trent). We'll be able to visit the likes of York and other cities for long weekends without worrying about finding a safe mooring to leave Still Rockin' and do whatever, and go wherever we want.
That's the plan! So all you boaters our there ... contact me via the blog if you're going to be on the Shroppie, Caldon, Staffs and Worc, Trent and Mersey so that we might meet up, help through locks and have a boating fix ... have no doubts ... we will surely miss boating ... but are now ready to try something different ... for us.
We shall continue to read the blogs and I'll update mine from to time, so it's not goodbye ... just cheerio for now!