Friday 25 October 2002
After lunch the rain stopped and we set off down the locks winding at the far end of the Folly moorings. All the moorings were full as WFB where also having a party in the Folly on Saturday. The only place we could go was in the first pound above the bottom lock. Just as we entered the lock it started raining and hailing, but luckily it didn’t last long. Once moored we walked back up the flight to the car and went to see my son as we had a clay pigeon trap to deliver. When we returned we left the car in the BW yard at the bottom lock and fount that NB “Thorn” and her butty “Persephone” were moored each side of us. We walked down to where Draco was moored at the water point and had an early birthday drink.
Saturday 26 October 2002
It was a very windy night which kept waking us up, but the morning was sunny. We took the car back to the moorings and walked back down the flight,. In the afternoon we wandered along the boats chatting to NB’s “Laura” “Raven” and “Albion”. After the evenings festivities in the Folly we headed back to Draco for Birthday cake, drinks and nibbles.
Sunday 27 October 2002
Last night was even wilder than the night before and today it was blowing a full gale. Like most of the other boats we decided to stay put for the day. One exception to this was the steam boat “Laplander” who had to get back to Stockton so a group of us volunteered to help. Guy went with Sean and Stephanie to steer while the rest of us went by car first to Calcutt locks and then Stockton to work the locks and handle ropes. At Calcutt I went aboard “Laplander” to ride to Stockton which was quite an experience. Stephanie was driving and Guy steering while Sean was lowering the funnel for passing under bridges. Every time he did this and we passed under a bridge the down draught made flames belch out of the boiler setting fire to lagging etc. and on some occasions blowing out the boiler which being hot would re-ignite with a wosh.
We made good progress down the Stockton flight with the car crew having all the locks ready for us. Once at Stockton we all retired to the Blue Lias for something warm, however this was to be a disappointment as the Blue Lias was without electricity. We returned to Laplander and Sean made us all coffee laced with something a bit stronger to beat the cold.
Monday 28 October 2002
What a change in the weather, today it was clear and sunny. After walking to Napton Post Office, a very usefull shop that sells most things that one may need