Thursday, 2 May 2013


We're getting acquainted with the Shroppie. No better place to be on yet another sunny day as we tie up for another excellent homemade lunch.

Along the way we met up with some acquaintances. Bruce, of NB Sanity Again, came over to say hello while we were on the water point at Norbury Junction. More than an acquaintance, he's a mine of information about useful things, so I took him inside Erin Mae to get his advice about what to use on the floor where it's got a bit worn. Thanks, Bruce. May the mine never get worked out!  Then we popped over into the paint shop to see Richard, who did such a cunning job with our paintwork last summer while he was still at Great Haywood. He was in his element, stirring a pot of point to the consistency, as he puts it, of hot tomato soup (it was red paint).

Then we set off for Market Drayton, and got a little too acquainted with a couple of boats on the way. Having passed hardly anything all day, we suddenly came across two in quick succession, just after entering the narrowest part of the pound at Woodseaves Cutting. Not where you want to cross with a couple of hire-boats.

At the top lock of the Tyrley flight, the boat coming through exited far slower than I expected. Because I was already moving, I couldn't swing out early enough to get into position – result was that I got a little too acquainted with the concrete edges of the lock entrance. Oh dear…

One lock further down the flight, a steerer on his first day at the tiller headed straight for Erin Mae at some speed as I waited for him to pass. Just in time he managed to apply the brakes (full reverse gear) and avoid too intimate an acquaintance. We've all been there. And a couple of locks further on we came across a lady who'd read this blog yesterday, but we didn't even have time to swap names or learn which boat they were on before moving on down. They're stopping in Market Drayton tonight, so perhaps we shall get acquainted after all. We're just past Bridge 63.

So – another beautiful day. Here's a puzzle. 50 brownie points (no cash value whatsoever) to whoever can spot the difference in Erin Mae from yesterday's photos.


  1. I guess the brasso tin is a little emptier today :)

    1. Nice try, Kevin, but actually not a trace of Brasso in sight!