Monday, 3 August 2009

More walking than boating

A cosy little week-end hideaway

My feet ache! But I've only myself to blame. A short walk turned into a lengthy hike. We moored at Tixall Wide, a lake like section of canal created so the local lord of the manor wouldn't have his view defaced my a mere canal. The house has long gone but the Wide survives. Tough luck m'lord.
A walk down to pretty Tixall Lock found a hire boat sitting in the lock waiting for it to rise – while instead the water poured out the bottom paddles that had been left up. At the helm was a young mum in fashionably large sunglasses, apparently daydreaming of shops and make-up, while young son, Toby, ten if he was a day, and his little sister were in charge of lock duties.
After assistance from the Star team they drifted off, mum still draped languidly over the tiller while Starman and Starwoman gave their suitably male and female verdicts on the incident. "Very brave of her to take two young kids on a boating holiday" mused Starman, basking in the afterglow of his chvalry to a damsel in distress. "Hmmph! Stupid woman; just a stick insect." was Starwoman's retort. Miaaow.
Anyway, on with the walk. Off the canal and up to Milton Common. Then we made the bold decision to strike back across the edge of Shugborough Hall estate (a stately pile once owned by Lord Lichfield but now National Trust) meet the canal and circle back to the boat.
If only we'd known we'd faced a climb to Everest base camp to get up the hillside! At least on the other side of the hill we got a free walk right across the grounds on a public footpath, crossing the Trent on the spectacular stone Essex Bridge (pictured) and finally - via a pint in Great Haywood's village pub - five miles later we were back at the boat.
Knackered - but at least we'd rescued a stick insect...

1 comment:

Lucy Blick said...

"Probably dreaming of shopping and make-up" WHAT!? I can't believe you of all people typed this patronisingly sexist statement! Perhaps she just decided she wasn't going to get stressed out by the situation as no doubt someone would be along soon who could help her out...

Tut tut, Starman. I hope I find no other such indiscretions in future blogs...