Tixall Wide to Penkridge

Today’s ridiculously wet Journey:

We knew today would be a wet one so we suited appropriately and set off. I do love how some locks get to have a lock cottage, dates back to when most locks were manned.

Noticed a first as we went passed a boat with a massive cage on the front deck and a wooden ramp into the water for their collection of ducks they seem to be taken round with them!

I didn’t take many pictures today as it was so wet! If i had taken my sopping wet gloves off to use my camera i’d have never got them back on again. We were in great spirits and spent most of it laughing. It’s easy to let the rain get to you but we live in the UK, we would be idiots if we expected anything less. We were treated to a glorious moment where a kingfisher went to fly across the bow of the boat and stopped right in the middle and hovered, vertically, for a few seconds before darting down into the water to catch a fish. We knocked off the revs and watched as s/he dived again and caught another, then flew off up the waterway.

Richard grabbed his camera and tried to capture something, as always, so hard to get a clear shot of them but in that moment we were very happy to have have experienced that strange suspended moment in time where it hovered in front of us.

Just when we thought the rain couldn’t get any harder it truly pelted it down. I was lucky not to be showered by the huge puddles the cars were speeding through at one point. We had caught up with a little hire boat but the poor gent seemed to be doing all the setting of locks, driving into them, then closing while his partner stood on the back deck. I didn’t pass any judgement as you don’t know peoples situations. Turns out she really wasn’t enjoying the trip, locks really frightened her. We tried to explain a calmer way to go up locks but the guy wasn’t interested and told us to ignore her. I wasn’t going to insert myself into their domestic set up but i then changed my view and felt sad for the woman instead as boating can and should be calm, relaxed and peaceful.

The rest of the locks went smoothly as we laughed and joked our way through. The hire boat had stopped for some water but luckily pulled off just as we were coming up in the lock so we stopped for water and to empty the bins. We would both be in need of a long hot shower tonight. We had also been keeping the fire going all day as although it wasn’t cold, we knew we’d be needing it to dry out the clothes once we stopped.

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