Sunday, 26 July 2015

Cleaning and back on the T&M

Two days without a blog! Thursday night saw us moored just above the boat lift still on the Weaver. We spent all of Friday morning cleaning Tilly May. She did need it.  I concentrated on the outside and Jan inside. By 2pm she looked much better so we moved to the boat lift moorings and booked the next run up at 4pm. We were entertained by a brass band playing in the marquee on the grassed area by the lift and met Glyn and Dave and Willow (their 5 month old Golden Retriever, a great furry ball of fun) on nb Grand Affair.  We shared a long trip up the lift in the pouring rain. We moored on the 48hour moorings on the T&M canal and had a shower before heading for the Stanley Arms for a few beers and something to eat. The strange thing about the pub was it was full of identical springer spaniels. It turns out that one of the locals has a springer that had 13 pups, all but one of which now live in Anderton!

The bar in the Stanley Arms

We were joined by Glyn and Dave and Willow and had a great couple of hours chatting about dogs and canals. The bar was packed with people and dogs, mostly canal folk.  We had a great evening and had a few too many beers.  Glyn and Dave were stopping at the boat lift to take friends down onto the Weaver on Saturday. We could not do a blog as we had zero signal on all devices but we'd swapped blog addresses so we can keep in touch.

Site of new Marina near Middlewich

Pontoons in but not yet flooded

Saturday morning we headed back down the T&M passing the site of a new marina and stopping at Middlewich for supplies. We wandered around the market stalls on the main street and bought some nice bread and snack food (lots of local produce, cheeses, etc but had run out of local pork pies before we got there - Chris very disappointed). We had a quick pint in The Vault before heading back to the boat. A very strange pub.  More of a big wooden hut that only sold draught lager or cider. Populated by the more colourful folk of Middlewich.  Anyway a pint of Stella went down well.  The move through the four locks in Middlewich was like pulling teeth. When we arrived at the lock there were 5 boats queuing in front of us. Three of the boats had picked up their hire boat just below the lock and had only been on them for half an hour and hardly hadn't a clue about team work - after all, if you have 5 people on board isn't it assumed you only need 1 to pilot and the rest can help on the locks or do they just stand around? Jan got really frustrated so helped on the top gate paddles for the 4 boats in front of us just to speed things up. The other holdup was a broken ground paddle on the second lock so it took an age to fill. It took three hours to get into open country and we managed to moor at 6:30pm both knackered. Home made chicken curry for tea and in bed by 8:30pm!!

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