We walked up to the Crick Village Market before we left – it’s like a little farmers’ market with cakes, crafts, jams etc but no veg, so having bought some cakes and snacks for lunch it was off to the Co-op for some salad stuff before we set of about 11. Cruising created enough breeze for us to need long sleeves – quite a novelty this week. We only met one boat near the entrance to the tunnel, so it was an easy passage, and only slightly damp.
As we neared Watford locks with boats coming towards us we thought we might be lucky with the queuing and we were – just time for a quick cuppa and down we went, third in a line of 4.
As we neared the bottom Dave (Chuffed) fell into conversation with Dave (What a Lark) comparing jokey boat names as What a Lark waited in the bottom pound for us to go through, with Yarwood waiting at the bottom of the flight.
Although it was lunchtime it was now so hot we decided to find a shady spot to stop, but there was nowhere suitable till we got to Weltonfield marina so we stopped to get diesel and ate while we waited.
We were almost looking forward to Braunston tunnel to get cool again (Deb hates tunnels). As we entered we could see there was a boat coming, some way off, when we heard three loud blasts on a horn – panic! could we remember what horn signals mean? then a loud bang boomed down the tunnel with the sound of an engine revving violently . We crept on very cautiously and along came a tug, going very slowly. As he passed us the helmsman burst into what appeared to be singing and echoed his way to the exit. Moored soon after the tunnel was nb Mosame, recovering their shattered nerves as we moored above Braunston locks. They had seen the tug bearing down on them in the middle of the tunnel with no sign of realising they were there, so they had stopped and blasted their horn – we had heard the resultant bang and engine in reverse. The guy had been singing then as well so we thought perhaps he had lunched too well at the Admiral Nelson. Idiot.
We walked down to the village but were just too late to catch the butcher, so we ended up with a boring old pizza for tea, jazzed up with some roast peppers and courgettes.