I do love a good Korma. Unfortunately, this wasn't it. It was the most tasteless, watery and dissapointing yellow gak, I've ever had the misfortune of cooking with. Like a pillock, I did not spot the "Half Fat" warning, until after purchasing it. Doh...
Update: Sheena says that all half fat produce is watery gak.
I got a mooring spot, but it wasn't the one I was aiming for. Was just coming down through the lock, when I saw somebody steaming upstream, and plonk themselves in the spot I'd scoped out with Sumo, twenty minutes previously. Aarrgghh! Alan (Mv Latitude) also gave me a call to let me know. Thanks, Alan.
I know we are not facing the 'correct' way (upstream), but I was just grateful to find a place, really. Everywhere else was completely stuffed. And, if I'd gone down through the bridge, it was doubtful whether I could have made it back up again. The stream through there is stilly pretty fierce today. Oh well, No worries. I don't mind getting bobbed about by the weirstream. When the weir sluices were fully opened, we came a bit close to drifting up and over the bank, a few days ago, but thankfully the river level has dropped down to it's normal, less worrisome, levels.
It was a bit annoying to have to go out and adjust ropes every couple of hours, but better safe than sorry. I also have two 3ft stakes banged in, and I'm happy to report that even the friday night jazz cruise by the Salter's steamer, didn't seem to budge them.
Amazing. I just have to wave a cabanos around, and I have his full attention. One for Sheena, who is missing him at the moment.
Her mum's operation went well. South Devon has a high proportion of elderly people, and the whole thing was pretty much a routine conveyor belt affair, with a very good success rate. Thankyou, NHS. Now she is recuperating, and getting her strength back. She's also been moved to a cottage hospital in Axminster, which is much closer to her home, and less stressful journeying for Sheena and her sister when they visit.
We'd already pretty much written off this year's cruising season, because Sheena's mum needs more looking after. Unfortunately, she fell over last night and broke her hip. Or the hip may have broken and caused the fall. Operation scheduled for 4pm this afternoon at Exeter hospital. All going well, after that, a lengthy period of recuperation and physiotherapy will be necessary. In case you were wondering why we haven't travelled very much at all this year, this is the reason why.
I'm currently stuck in Abingdon, with red boards (no travelling), along virtually the whole of the river. Leaving the boat here for any length of time is not a possibility, because the salter's steamers trip boat pulls out our mooring pins from the spongy soil soaked with months of heavy rain. It also heeled our boat over so much, I thought we were going to sink by rolling over (my scariest boating moment, ever). So, I'm hoping the stream on the river will desist a little, and I can make my way down to Sonning soon.
Tied up at the Tesco mooring in Reading, to top up supplies. Walked Sumo quickly around the park, as there was discarded packaging, bottles, and plastic stuff *everywhere*. And it had all obviously come from Tesco.
After that, we took ourselves up to Beale park, as it's usally very nice up there. Unfortunately, there was 10 tonnes of Goose Poo, and a whole load of cowpats. You literally could not take more than two paces, without stepping in the stuff. A big dissapointment, and I feel sorry for the boatowners who will have to moor there for next week's boat show.
Next morning, we set off early, and cruised up to Goring. Which was grey and uneventful, until we saw this...
King Henry VIII being rowed along in the royal barge. Not something we see every day.
Sadly, when we got to Goring, everybody was in Bank Holiday Jubilee mode. All tied up with their flags and sandwiches. There was a *hell* of a flow from the two weirs, and it was unavoidable that we would be bouncing off of their shiny expensive boat fenders. With much tutting, harumphing, and them fending us off we eventually made our way down the hour long queue, and got ourselves through Goring lock. Where the rest of the journey was much more peaceful and people free.
Had to fight a bit of stream on this leg of the journey, and barely made it through Wallingford Bridge, where the water was pouring through at quite a rate of knots. But thankfully, we made it, and Mr Bukh's 2 cylinder engine did us proud. All of the town moorings were taken up with more big cruisers out for the weekend jublilations. And the fishing holes normally used by narrowboats were all stuffed, too. Several unlicensed boats which had obviously been dumped, didn't help much, either. But, we did manage to get ourselves a shallow spot, right at the end of the meadows, with a couple of trees to tie up on. A free mooring is a free mooring, so no complaints from us. Glad, after a long day, just to tie up and have a nice sit down.
Yellow boards (stream increasing) warnings are in place upwards of Benson lock. And it's raining heavily again, so we are staying put in Wallingford today. Good sniffs and walks for Mister.