The Kingfisher boys were as good as their word – in fact they were a day earlier than promised. I turned up at the boat yard last Friday with a car bulging to the seams, and then a few hours later starting putting full boxes back into it. We just had too much stuff! This boating lark is going to be a sharp learning curve.
The following morning we set off on a four-day snagging cruise, with my two shipmates, Paul and David who had arrived during the day.
All is well my friends, and while I have already put a few tell-tale marks down the gunwales, where we have been bounced around in a few locks (16 so far), everything is working, shower, loo, central heating, stove etc. We can’t get any sort of signal on the telly, and as I write this Mick from Kingfisher is investigating the reasons. There is a small leak from the stern valve, which I am lead to believe is common and will sort itself out and we have a couple of sticky drawers and one that flies out at random, but we think that is because I have too much weight in it.
The first day I was naturally very apprehensive as we went through the lock at Trent Lock and made our way out on to the Trent for our journey west on the Trent & Mersey, but now I am much more relaxed and confident. I am really glad we had the bow thrusters installed and my ship mate Paul had been invaluable in imparting bits of knowledge on helmsmanship that I had forgot or never learnt.
|The Cat's Whiskers gets battered in Stenson Lock|
|Looking quite professional in this one|
So we travelled from Trent Lock to Willington, via Shardlow and back again. Everywhere we have gone the boat has had admiring glances. I think she looks great and so, it appears, does everybody else.
We are now back at the boatyard while Mick sorts out our TV. It’s been bucketing down all afternoon so I think we will hole up here until tomorrow and then complete our mini cruise by going up into Nottingham and back – about a six-hour cruise, although the weather forecast is for snow!
Miles travelled 30. Locks: 18