Wednesday 12th July; from the River Avon to the Stratford canal – less than half a mile
It rained well into the night. We slept well till dawn when we were abruptly awoken by an almighty crash! The dog was on our bed in a flash and it took a moment or two to realise that it was only a long rolling thunderclap and not some dreadful accident befalling us. It all went quiet again after a bit of squawking from wildfowl, and when we got up the weather was clear and the sun was shining across the park and through the trees.
The rain had raised the river level about 5 inches. Our moorings, though not too tight anyway, had slackened off considerably. Over breakfast we watched the early scullers on one side, and the runners and dog walkers on the other. This is a lovely mooring, very quiet, and we weren’t bothered by a request for mooring fees either. I went up to town to try and find Barry the Butcher, which I did eventually, but couldn’t find the greengrocer which I thought was there. I bought a paper and some delicious-looking olive bread in Sainsbury’s, using the self-checkout, and bought a lardy cake in the posh little bakery/cafe (now supplying fruit cake By Appointment To HRH). Back at the boat I discovered that I had left the bread and papers in the bagging area. B****r.
We decided to go up to Bancroft Basin before lunch rather than later on, so Dave gave Meg a quick extra play in the park before we left. He has trained her to run between his legs on command, and as a reward he throws the ball for her to catch.
When we arrived at the lock up onto the canal the trip boat was almost ready to come down, so as the lock was in their favour we waited for them. There was plenty of room on the pontoons and we moored near the CRT information boat. I went straight up to Sainsbury’s and explained my foolishness. The lovely checkout assistants had put my shopping on one side, bless them. I could sense their metaphorical eye-rolling as this daft woman collected her Guardian and olive bread. But the bread was lovely so it was worth the (slight) embarrassment.
I lazed around during the afternoon, watching boats arriving or passing through, but Dave took Meg with him to the area outside the theatre to watch a guitarist. I could hear the music perfectly well on the boat, but Dave likes to watch a performer’s technique. When it cooled a bit I went for a run in the park but had to cut it short with a torn calf muscle. I did however manage to limp up to the Wetherspoon’s, the Golden Bee, where we had an excellent pint and a well-prepared steak. You need protein to repair muscle damage, you know. And the chips were excellent.
1 lock, less than half a mile