Tuesday, February 17, 2009

The Mad Swan of Swindon, more lambs and a boating Grand Master

That cob I mentioned last night was certainly persistent. He kept on attacking the boat till 11 0’clock last night, took some time out, then started again at 6 this morning! He was still at it when we left, chasing along the side of the boat, pecking at the hull. He must have a pretty tough beak. I reckon he needs some anger management counseling….

Mad Swan of Swindon, looking a bit tired…
Jo on Hadar and Sue on No Problem have both beaten me to posting lamb pictures.

Big Ahhhh….

But I reckon I win the most in one picture award…

I count 24. Spot the 2 black ones on the right?

There are 2 locks at Swindon, one at either end of the built up area.

Heading to Marsh Lock
We’ve hardly seen a boat moving for the last few weeks, so it came as a bit of a surprise when we saw a boat waiting at the top of Botterham staircase locks for us to come up. I guess I’ll have to start checking for oncoming boats again…

Leaving Botterham, another boat ready to go down.
Wombourne is pretty well completely swamped with new housing, with still more under construction. It must be a handy dormitory area for Birmingham. Trouble is, no matter what they do, they all seem to look the same…

Wombourne “Legoland”
2 more boats passed us, heading to Stourport, before we reached Bratch Locks. And there was another just preparing the top chamber as we arrived.
This was Victor and Nancy on the hire boat Phoenix out of Norbury. They were a little unsure of the operation of this flight, so I gave them a hand down.
Then Victor kindly returned the favour as we went up. Chatting while waiting for the locks to fill (as you do…), I found out that he’s a semi-retired teacher, and now teaches chess to pupils in schools all over the country. They also organise international tournaments a few times a year. Twice a year, early winter and late winter, they hire a boat for a week. They’ll be taking Phoenix back to Norbury for Friday, so they’ll overtake us in the next couple of days.

Cheers, Victor.

There’s a lot of boaters gone through this ‘ole under the bridge at the bottom of the flight…
Vortex as the middle lock fills. You wouldn’t want to fall in there…
Coming up the bottom lock

We pulled over just around the corner from the visitor moorings, about 5 minutes from the locks.
We’re opposite the cricket ground here, near the sign that warns about errant cricket balls. I don’t think they’ll be playing this week, though.

Locks 8, miles 3


Kev said...

Hi Folks,
Been following your blog, we are having some canvas work done to our boat at Compton, will leave first thing tomorow (Thursday) so may see you if you pass our way before then
Kev & Ann (nb 4evermoore)

Geoff and Mags said...

Hi Kev
As you'll see from tonight's post, we stopped quite a bit short of Compton. I reckon we'll be there early afternoon tomorrow, and we'll keep an eye out for you in case you've been delayed.