Monday 10th October; Cape locks to above Fosse locks
Another chilly start, though once we left the deep shade of our mooring it was much warmer. We dropped down Cape locks with Khayamanzi then waved them goodbye as we were in dire need of a water top-up. As the water filled, Dave took the opportunity to refill the stern tube, I did a bit of washing then between us we gave the roof a sweep then a good scrub in warm sunshine. It had dirt and grit from the centre ropes, tree debris and unidentifiable grot over most of it.
Back to fleeces and hats when we started cruising down to the big Tesco though, and again after our shop. We pulled in for lunch in Leamington Spa, then walked up to Jephson Gardens which we have never got around to visiting. Unfortunately for Meg dogs have to be kept on leads but at least we could take her into the Glasshouse, which is a modern-design greenhouse planted up with exotics such as banana, loquat and bougainvillea, the pink climber in this photo. Free too. It was warmer out of the wind and it’s a nice place for a little wander. Only one picture though as my camera is playing up and neither of us had our phone.
It was a bit chilly to enjoy the gardens and the beds had all been cleared of their summer flowers. It must be a wonderful place to linger on a hot summer’s day. The team of gardeners was busy planting out the bedding for spring, with trays and trays of plants on tall wheely trolleys like the ones you see in B&Q and garden centres. It should look fantastic in spring, though it is very bare now. This should look good when the autumn colours kick in.
There is a building project going on at the mooring but whether it is offices or flats or a residential home we couldn’t tell. The hoardings have been decorated by local college students.
It was after 3 before we set off again, but as we hope to be in Calcutt marina by tomorrow night we wanted to get closer to the Stockton flight before we stop for the day. It’s not pretty here and not good for the dog either.
We were on our own up the locks, though as we left Radford Bottom there was time for a quick hello to Trish and Dave on Traveller’s Joy, who were approaching – they used to live in our village. Fosse locks were in our favour. We collected plenty of kindling from fallen ash twigs around the locks, and I also managed to pick another little bowlful of blackberries.
We moored on a nice patch of piling in a sheltered spot halfway to Wood lock. We had our second roast in two days – an excellent bit of beef from the butcher in Knowle and Yorkshire pud made with a recipe from one of the boating magazines which worked better than the recipe I use at home. Yum.
6 locks, 6 and a half miles