Monday, July 20, 2009

A good cruise and Meg gets some snazzy footwear.

The heavy showers over the weekend put paid to any plans for working on the outside of the boat, but I had a list of bits and pieces to do inside, so kept busy. Had a couple of good long walks with Meg, luckily missing the heaviest of the rain.

Dramatic sunset between showers last night.
We got away soon after 9 this morning, with an open-ended plan depending on the weather. As it turned out, we had a dry, breezy day so pushed all the way through to Kilby Bridge, a long day by our standards!

Weedy channel near Smeeton.
One of the hazards at this time of year are the floating reed rafts, as vegetation breaks away from the banks.

They always seem to be lurking in bridge holes…..

Saddington Tunnel was empty as we passed through. Even though there’s room for 2 boats to pass, I’m not keen on meeting other boats in these confined spaces. Didn’t see any of the colony of Daubenton's Bats, either.

Saddington Tunnel
We’d spotted another boat following us into the tunnel, so took it easy to the first lock, Kibworth Top Lock. There was an Anglo Welsh hire boat just dropping down as we arrived, and by the time I’d refilled the lock and we were ready to go in, we had locking companions.

In Kilby Top Lock, I can’t for the life of me remember the name of the other boat…

We had a bit of a drama a couple of locks down. We’d caught up with the hire boat, so were waiting on the top lock landing as I refilled the lock. This, of course, lowered the level in the short pound to the lock above, and Seyella finished up high and dry on a pile of rocks.

She was showing a good 6” of weedy bottom, and took 3 of us on 2 long poles, as well as a slug of water from the lock above, to push her off.

The rest of the day passed without incident. We lost our erstwhile lock companions at lock 27 where they stopped for lunch, did the next lock solo, then caught up with a single-hander and did the delightfully named Bumblebee Lock in tandem.

15 minutes later, at around 14:00, we tied up opposite the maintenance depot at Kilby Bridge.
Meg has been bothered by a sore paw the last couple of days, on examination she appeared to have a cut between 2 of her toes. So we’ve been bathing it in salt water and applying antiseptic cream, which she immediately licks off again!
Rather than having to keep telling her to leave it alone (and getting the sad eyed, wounded expression that makes you feel so guilty), I decided to remove the temptation. She’s now sporting the latest fashion in Saxon style bootees. I don’t think she’s very impressed, though.

Meg’s new footwear
An old running sock with a lace threaded around to keep it up makes a good lick proof covering.

It’ll have to come off when she’s out, but she’s usually distracted by other things while out on a walk. If we can keep it clean and covered for a couple of days I’m sure it’ll heal well.

Locks 12, miles 7

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