Friday, 19 July 2013

On Sue's beloved Nene

We left Peterborough at lunchtime. Topped up with shopping and water and emptied of rubbish. Good place to be. We were heading for Alwalton Lock which we'd loved on the way down and had great walks for LJ.  Great to get to the lock and find no-one moored.

We'd not been here long when a boat pitched up and asked if we'd mind them coming past and mooring behind us. Of course not. In the end they didn't, decided to go on to try their luck at Ferry Meadows.  I don't think it was anything we said. They have travelled the entire length of the Nene in THREE DAYS and have hated it. Said there was nowhere to moor. Now heading for the Great Ouse. Not members of GOBA. Good luck with that.

I had a bit of a run in with some local teenagers this evening. I'd taken LJ off for a swim. About 30 of them there, no doubt celebrating end of term. Whilst I was there half a dozen of them started to try and destroy a bridge over the creek which is part of a popular circular walk.Of course, I couldn't leave it alone. Went over and asked them to stop and asked why they wanted to wreck the area and spoil it for everyone, took their photo!  Two girls very worried that I might call the police but and this is the amazing part, none of the others got involved. We will check it out tomorrow but about half of them left shortly after LJ and I departed.

Wednesday, 17 July 2013

A reminder of Bill and Ben .....

An awful lot of WEED! Such slow going across from Salters Lode to Marmont Priory Lock. Lost count of  how many times Alistair was down the weed hatch. Maureen, the lock keeper is a real character and lovely to talk to. Things got better after that but we were very relieved to see a mooring spot as we arrived in March.

We plan on an early start tomorrow to be in Peterborough at lunchtime. Alistair is hoping to get an afternoon appointment at the NHS walk in dentist. Well, hoping is perhaps not quite the right word. 

Waiting for the river

Lovely cruise down to Denver Sluice and we got the last mooring space only five minutes before there was a passage through the lock. Good luck for us. Went to Jeynes Pub as too hot to cook LJ only allowed in the garden which was fine today but we won't be troubling them again and not because we're leaving! The setting is fantastic and it was really busy but our food was indifferent to poor. Not expensive but not good value. Shame as we have had some excellent meals whilst we've been here. We're now waiting for the tide to turn to make the short passage down to Salter's Lode.

Lj had some great swimming. It really seems to help his stiff leg and totally wipes him out for the night. He just loves it bit it's a bit annoying when he starts crying to be taken in the heat of the afternoon - especially when we know the bank's too sheer for him to get in. Still not the case here.

Looking for a lost relative? Last night's mooring.

Sunday, 14 July 2013

Good Samaritans - that's us!

We were the last boat away from Jude's Ferry this morning - no surprise there. Had a very good meal there last night. Excellent pub menu. I was excited by the full German style menu of Schnitzles. No contest for me. Shame dogs only in garden. Not a winter pub for us but what a lovely nice landlord. We Good Samaritans at the lock and gave some milk to a cruiser coming up who we learnt as we chatted had run out. Actually, the cruiser in the first photo.

I'm sure Alistair had a plan. We stopped at Prickwillow for water. QISMA had a very thorough outside clean. The inside had something between a good going over and a 'lick and a promise' one of my Mum's sayings.

We carried on then leaving the River Lark and headed in the direction of Denver Sluice. Settled on a lovely quiet GOBA mooring for the night which allowed for a leg of lamb BBQ. Tomorrow we will book our passage through for Wednesday.

So, some phots from today.

Saturday, 13 July 2013

Best meal of the summer?

Sadly, I am not going to provide the restaurant tip of the year. The best meal was our barbecued Sea Trout which we had yesterday. It's part of my birthday bonanza - well not really a bonanza but I use that excuse to justify the expense. Still, it is only once a year - fish and birthday. It a,ways reminds me of the first time I ever ate Sea Trout. It was in a pub restaurant in Cointy Londonderry. I asked the waitress what was the difference between Rainbow and Sea trout. She replied 'the difference is that we've got Sea Trout' and I've loved it ever since.

I haven't even got a photo but I DO have a photo of the QISMA Summer Cocktail

Recipe stolen from The Mill at Brampton - WOW!

We left Ely feeling sad yesterday and turned onto the River Lark - no pins on this especially as late yesterday evening my back went and by the time I was sent to bed I was crying with pain. No need to get the hankies out. The boat medic doused me up with painkillers and this morning I'm well enough for us to head off to Jude's Ferry and the end of this particular line.

We've just set off from Prickwillow. I always think Prickwillow, Prickwillow, Prickwillow but a Google search doesn't explain why. I keep thinking it's in a poem - or something similar is and I'm just confused. If any of you are able to offer an explanation of this I'd be very grateful!

Leaving Ely

Thursday, 11 July 2013

Dressed Overall

Spot the Yorkshire Rose!
I wondered what Alistair was up to this morning and when I got up I found,that the flags were up on QISMA for my birthday. Our neighbours tell us we've been the Kate Moss of boats today, being photographed non stop.

We've been out and about enjoying Ely on market day. Lunch at Peacocks Tea Room - highly highly recommended. This evening at the Cutter Inn. Lots of lovely messages from friends, relatives, fellow bloggers and Tweeters. I have had a lovely day.

Tomorrow we are heading for the River Lark, our last excursion for the 2013 trip. After that, it will all be retracing our steps to the K&A. 

Monday, 8 July 2013

Not the only swimmers around

Seals as we came along past Earith towards Hermitage Lock.  What a treat! 

Thursday, 4 July 2013

As we were going to St Ives we met .......

Well boats! And, hard as this is to believe, we had to queue for a lock for the first time since we left Newbury last February!

Ahead of us were two day boats full of 4th July revellers on their way to St Ives to meet friends and have a BBQ.

We've been saying how like France this stretch of the river must be, lacking only a game of boules - et voila!

We had a fantastic two nights at Bamford Mill and I had the second best drink of my life's, Hendricks Gin, cucumber, elderflower cordial, ice and soda. The new boat cocktail. 

And a fantastic lunch yesterday. It will be getting an entry on LJ's favourite pubs page any minute now!

The view from QISMA wasn't bad either.  Only intermittent Internet so no blog yesterday. 

Monday, 1 July 2013

Meanwhile, back in the real world

What a lovely weekend we had but time to move on and we've arrived in St Neots. We hear it was really busy on the moorings here so we're glad we didn't come in over the weekend.

We've had some discussion over how to pronounce the name. Fortunately, Graham Norton had the same problem with a request on Saturday so, thanks to Bobbi, the weekend travel guru on Radio 2, we arrived wiser and not likely to offend the natives.  For those,  the least bit interested, it's Ne-ots with every letter pronounced.

A small but good shopping centre. Gifts and cards for upcoming birthdays duly acquired and Waitrose took a fair bit of dosh. I've treated Alistair to some Heston Blumental ribs, reduced obviously, for tomorrow when I'll be on the 2 side of the 5:2 coin. I find it so much easier to manage when I feed him something I have no interest in eating! We'll see how they compare with his usual, more average, fayre.

Only one photo for tonight. I don't want to detract from the message that St Neots is trying to get across. Which I totally support.