Monday, May 16, 2011

Honestly! The people you meet on the canal.......

First things first, we were in First Class both ways to and from Heathrow on United/Continental.  Man they have some good wines up there. Grand Cru Bordeaux was my choice.
We arrived on the day of the Royal Wedding and got to our hotel in time to see  'the kiss' on the balcony.

A very enjoyable aspect of our trip was meeting Keith and Josie Tudor, Geoff and Helen Bailey, Dave and Cheryl Barnard and Ray and Joan Barnard and having some time with them on the boat.

We had arranged to meet the Tuds in Atherstone at 1220.  The trains run on time and you know to the minute when you will arrive.  However when the train was pulling into the station we grabbed our heavy bags and waited for the doors to open.  They didn't.  Seems like you have to press a button for the door to open and despite my panicked screaming for help, by the time someone said 'press the button' ( which was behind my back) it was too late!

Off we went to the next station 10 miles further down the track.  Luckily a nice young man allowed me to use his mobile phone to call Tud and alert him.  Tud came to Tamworth and rescued us.

 Beverly and Josie...

 Me and my schoolchum Tud...

After we sailed for three days with Keith and Josie we had a great lunch provided by Cousin Geoff and wife Helen and switched out guests.  The Tuds went home and the Baileys came on board.

 With Geoff and Helen we met up with Nephew Dave and Cheryl at Hinckley in a pub with great food called The Lime Kilns.  ???

 We had a good meal and lots of lovely wine.  In fact, we drank all the cabernet that was on hand and had to settle for merlot for our final bottle. I was wishing I had some Cam Hughes wine stashed in my luggage by this time. Cheryl was the designated driver so she behaved herself and had only one glass.

With Geoff and Helen we decided to go all the way to the end of the Ashby Canal to Snarestone where the canal ends after going through a long tunnel.  Here's a couple of videos of a nice break from driving for me when Geoff was in command of the boat....

The tunnel really was a thrill and quite psychedelic for me as I lost my sense of equilibrium and really felt like we were moving sideways or even backward while in the middle of the tunnel. I imagine that's what dropping LSD feels like, but I don't know. It unnerved me for about 20 seconds however once I could see the entire circle of the opening at the end I was OK again.
And I was the one driving the boat at the time.

We sailed all the way back to Atherstone to have lunch with Nephew Ray Barnard and his wife Joan.  Ray was generous and thoughtful enough to bring pastries and meat pies from the famous Devonshire Cafe in Beautiful downtown Runcorn.

After we got sailing Ray and I enjoyed a Spitfire beer....unbelievably good stuff.

We needed some groceries so we hiked a mile into Hinckley Warwickshire and visited the Aldi store....

After the Barnards left Beverly and I had some good quieter times together.  She drives the boat well....

One thing we never tired of was looking at the swan families along the canal....

Sunday, May 15, 2011


The wildlife here on the canal is interesting to us, as is the domesticated farm animals and horses etc that we see all the time.

I have limited ability to download vids to YouTube but I did get this one done while we were outside a pub this morning.  The wifi was free but slow.  Took like 20 mins to download this.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Coventry and Ashby Canal Trip

Here's a quick post.  We got here a week ago yesterday and while we have internet connection via a Dongle, we are conserving MBs because I only have 1 GB.

We like our boat although the length at 60' is bigger than what we've had on prior trips and it is a bit harder to manage.  The canals are low level because of lack of rain and we are usually bottomed out 4 or 5 times a day.  Not fun.

Overall we've had a great time with the Tuds from Saturday last till Monday.  Geoff and Helen Bailley from Monday to Thursday ( Dave and Cheryl Barnard joined us for dinner on Wednesday in Hinckley ) and then The Barnards, Ray and Joan from Thursday till today, Saturday.
We have been on the canal for 8 days and the only day of rain was today.  But it was only for the morning.

We are in Atherstone at the moment enjoying a lunch at The Old Red Lion and we will be looking for a laundromat this afternoon.

Here are a few pics.