Wednesday, 8 July 2009

Hard labour

We're a slick, professional team these days - the 17 locks of the Northampton Arm were despatched in four hours and with everyone bar one set against us so they had to be emptied before entering, doubling the workload on the ultra-stiff paddles.
Thirteen of the locks are in rapid fire succession so I jogged ahead preparing the lock, Vicky drove in, I shut the gates, racked up the paddles, closed them after the lock filled, opened the upper gate, shut it behind her, jogged on to the next and did it all again. After eight locks I was knackered and Vicky was bored so we swapped (thank God!). Picture shows the view from the top looking back at the flight.
Lunch at the top and then we motored on up the main GU to look up 'Spud' alias Martin Baker alias William Piper Narrowboats who had just happened to get his copy of Canal Boat with my test of his Crick winning boat in it.
By way of thanks he got us to help unload a truck load of genuine (marked and dated) Victorian timber from Buckingham Palace which is earmarked for a future boat. As if we hadn't done enough work already today!
Tonight he's round again with a bottle or two to say 'thanks' again which is why I'm writing this while I still can.

PS: Blogging boaters spotted so far - at Northampton en route for the Nene and just before we moored near Bugbrooke today.

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