Well I’ve finally managed to get my first fix of the year, that’s the first time I’ve been boating since I broke my leg back in November last year, and what a cracking weekend we had. Viv Scragg phoned Dawn in the week to see if we fancied going up to the Lamb & Flag in Little Haywood to see a band. I suggested to Dawn that we take Darley out to Little Haywood and stop on her on Saturday night then bring her back on Sunday so we could both have a couple of drinks. I went down to Darley on Saturday morning and lit the range to air the cabin out and I fired up the Petter and pumped the rain water out the hold as well as a few other jobs. By two o’clock I was locking up and returning home ready for Dawn’s return from work. A quick shower and a change into ‘going out’ clothes and we were both ready and so set off from home, stopping off in the town for fish and chips which we took with us and sat in Darleys, now very snug, back cabin. By half five we were fed and watered, and with the Petter fired up we were off into a grey damp evening, dropping down Haywood lock and by six we were tying up next to bridge 72, Meadow Lane. We got Bruce off and took him for a walk down the towpath to Cowshit Lock and back before leaving for the pub. Before I left I banked the range up and closed it all down to smoulder away so that it would be nice and warm on our return. A quick stroll up the lane saw us sat in the window seat of the lounge and enjoying the first of many pints of Guinness and by 9.00pm we were joined by Viv and Si and enjoying the company and the band, Herbaceous Borders playing a good mix of rock. The pub was absolutely heaving especially as a wedding party had decided to join in the fun who had obviously been enjoying themselves most of the day buy the ‘merry’ state of them. The one female guest, and I’m guessing the maid of honour, insisted in putting her £50 hat on everybody in the room and taking their picture.
All too soon the evening was over and we were wandering back down the lane to Darley where my plan of having the back cabin as warm as toast had failed! It was that hot you could have cooked toast. Got into bed but could not sleep as it was far too hot so had to get up and open the back doors and cool it down. A 10.30 start saw us off down to the boat turn at Taft farm and two hours later saw us back at our mooring at Great Haywood. The rest of the day was spent cleaning and tidying, Dawn in the back cabin and me in the engine ‘ole, oh how much better I now feel for it. Another seven weeks and were off to the first show at Etruria and there is a lot of little jobs to be done to get rid of Darley’s winter coat, so if your passing give us a hoot but
Don’t bang ‘em about.