Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Torksey to Thorne

Monday Aug 23rd - The trip out onto the Trent didn't start off too well.  To begin with it had been torrential rain all night and I thought that it was going to be one of those days to stay inboard in the dry.  However by 0730 when I made ready to leave the mooring and move down to the lock it had cleared up somewhat and the rain had stopped.

An angler on the bank near the lock should have stayed in bed instead of getting out the wrong side this morning.  Last night just as it was getting dark six boats had come up from Keadby and were moored near the lock so there was no place for me.  I tied up at the diesel point for the 15 minutes I would have to wait for the lock to open.  Another boat coming down at the same time had the same problem with lack of moorings and came alongside.  The angler was not amused and spent the next half hour (I was a bit later than i thought leaving the point) making loud noises about not being allowed to moor there.  Silly old sod.  

Out of the lock by 0830 and down the Trent.  One of the few items to take ones interest along the way is the ruins of Torksey Castle peeping through the bushes and trees. It was the Elizabethan home of the Jeremy family and in the hands of the Parliamentarians til it was taken by Royalists from Newark during the Civil War.

At Gate Burton the folly that was built  in the 18th century and is now inhabited.

Nearby at Knaith is the 16th century old hall. This is the birthplace of Thomas Sutton who was Master of Ordanance in the North for Elizabeth I. This was also the home of Lord Willoughby who was in charge of the Parliamentary troops in the Civil War.

At last something to do. Through the bridge at Gainsborough.  The Trent isn't flowing as fast as it has in the past.  The Neap tide effect. On some bends in the past I have almost felt the need to lean over to one side due to the speed as though I was on a motor bike.

The ever present shopping trolley.  At least this one has traffic cones around it to warn river users.  The one pound in the slot hasn't worked this time unless that has been smashed to get the money out of it.

West Stockwith and entry to the Chesterfield Canal.  Wish I was going there now.  I had only managed to do four km in the first hour of travel and the engine was running at higher revs than usual.  The four other boats that left Torksey the same time as I had passed my long ago.

At last I could feel I was getting near the end.  The M180 road bridge looms out of the rain.  Its has been belting down for a while now.  The Trent is like running through mud it is that full of silt.

Still raining and I call Keadby lock to let them know I am getting near.  Although I have been slow moving my timing seems to be spot on.  One of the wide-beams has still to enter the lock and by the time I get there the lock should be ready for me.

Moored for the night in the rain and managed to keep the bows well away from the lock gate and the mass of water that is coming over it.

Tuesday Aug 24th - More torrential rain to start the day and lots of wind.  By lunch time it had cleared a bit and when a couple of wide-beams that had come down the Trent with me yesterday I decided to take advantage of the opening of the Vazon bridge and go through.  

As I went passed I thanked them and hoped they didn't mind me coming through.  After they had asked if I was on my own I was told to just stay behind Isis and Behomoth would open the bridges for both of us.  After each bridge Behomoth would come and overtake and go on to the next one.  These two boats have one hell of a turn of speed.  I had trouble keeping up in places.

Every thing was going swimmingly until we arrived at Moores Swing Bridge.  The last time I came through the bridge refused to swing.  It looks as though it is a regular habit. Five boats all waiting for the cavalry who soon turned up.  A good opportunity to make a cup of tea.  Where are the tea ladies when you need them? :-)

As I went through the bridge hole I spotted this narrowboat moored up.  I did ask if it was the narrowboat formerly know as.....  Anyone got a translation of the name?

At long last Thorne and the wobbly foot bridge.  Worked quite quickly for a change and soon alongside in yet another cloudburst. 

Not Chinese this time but Dwarfish runes moored next to me.  The owner of the boat did tell me that he had been picked up on this fact.

As the boat is registered in Minas Tirith the runes by right should be Elvish. Pedant!!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Lincoln to Torksey

I am hoping to go out onto the Trent on Monday so leaving the mooring at Lincoln on Friday gives me lots of time for a slow chug.  

Stopped in the middle of Lincoln to stock up with cat litter and food.  Wilkinsons store is right next to the canal and I didn't fancy lugging them all the way from Tesco or Morrisons on the bike. The Lincoln by the Sea                event is still drawing in the crowds.

As I was passing the facilities I took the opportunity to drop off the rubbish.

Uneventful trip to Saxilby where I will stay the night.  Before going into the mooring a visit to Tongs to top up the derv tank and replenish the emergency supply.

Saturday and after a heavy downpour of rain the weather turned much brighter and as I leave Saxilby the sun put in an appearance which didn't last for long but it did keep dry all the way to Torksey.

Not one of the great canals for scenery and neither one of interest for the helmsman with so many long straights.

But I eventually reached Torksey.  

Visitors on Sunday with Sid, Heidi and Marlene coming over from Horncastle. 

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Abigail Jenna visits Narrowboat Abigail Jenna

It has been my delight to not only have Abz visiting for a week but to baby-sit Izzy for Friday afternoon.  She is very easy to look after with a smile and scream of delight never far away.  I had to change my first nappy for many years but it seemed to stay on :-)

During Abz stay on board we made a present for Izzy -

and I bought a large bag of books from the charity shop for Abz to read. She managed to get through three in a week.

Then there was the shopping for t-shirts of various colours -

and some baking for when Mum and Dad came to pick her up.  The muffins went down a treat.

and finally Abz made me a holder for a joss-stick that we had bought to make the boat smell nice.

Who are they? Todays 'Spot the baby' question :-)

The main visit was to the Lincolnshire Life Museum. A place worthy of a second and third visit.  Up at the entrance to the castle Abz found that cannon make a wonderful climbing frame.

and across the street she took the time to chat up a couple of knights in shining armour.

Inside the museum there are opportunities to dress up in period costume.  There was a history trail that we followed and although Abz was dubious at first she was soon racing around looking for clues.

I, of course, had to try on a Victorian gents hat and cravat. 

The World War I tableau was just a bit too realistic for Abz.

and she didnt go big bundles on the Water Tank for Mesopotamia either. 

However out in the central courtyard we found Violet the road roller which was much less threatening.

The various shops turned up some more clues and the answer to this one was Bah Humbug :-) The trail was following Tom and Lucy on a trip to the seaside and the things they would need to take with them.

There is a lovely cafe with picnic tables outside and we did really well with a salad but that was augmented with a large slice of chocolate cake.

next to the cafe is a large room in which there are masses of colouring pencils and sheets to colour in. This was much enjoyed.

More costume here to try on and Abz had a pic taken (in suitable sombre mood) in front of Tom and Lucy.

Getting near the end of the trail and the Headmistress takes no back chat in the Schoolroom  -

as I found to my cost.

But I did get my own back.

Finally the walk back to the boat and a visit to the Conservatory at the Lawn and a view of all the fish

We splashed out the 20p for some fish food and the size of some of the fish was remarkable.

During Abz visit the seaside came to Lincoln with beach, funfair and Punch and Judy shows. 

and we must not forget visiting the Arboretum where another cafe was very good value and popular with lunch-time locals. Bacon and cheese baguettes went down well.

All too soon the week disappeared.