Sunday, 28 October 2018

Weekending

As with most blogging boaters who go back to bricks and mortar during the winter, my posts tail off around this time of year. We took home the first car-load a week and a half ago, combining the seasonal emptying of Erin Mae with a couple of things for which we needed to be in the south. But this weekend we suddenly find ourselves in boating mode again, albeit briefly.

First up was Saturday's annual meeting of the Boaters Christian Fellowship, held this year, as last, in Rugby – a good day of getting together with about 100 of the 600-strong membership. Some of them we have got to know quite well, but the day also provides the opportunity to chat with folk we've met only occasionally or not at all. Others (e.g., probably, Halfie, not least because he's married to the chair!) will post some pictures of the event. I thought I would put up one of Peter Braybrook, of NB Sonflower.


Peter is the BCF General Secretary and, along with the rest of the committee, does a lot of work behind the scenes to keep things developing. Not only is he also active with the Association of Waterways Cruising Clubs, but he and Fran have signed on as volunteer Waterways Chaplains. So this acknowledgement is partly to thank Peter for all he puts back into the waterways. He spent most of the meeting time on Saturday taking notes about proceedings and will be sending out the minutes, etc.

One of the highlights of the day was Richard Parry, CEO of the Canal and River Trust, joining us for lunch, and afterwards speaking for a while before answering questions. He didn't duck the hard ones, either (well, not much!) and his answers provided some insights into the complexities of the system.

After it was all over we drove over to Great Haywood to spend the weekend on Erin Mae – our Boat Safety Scheme inspection is scheduled for tomorrow. This morning we joined with Wildwood Church for worship, as normal when we're in the marina, and then went over to the Hollybush Inn at Salt for Sunday lunch. They're a friendly lot. I've posted some pictures of the outside before, so this time I thought I'd try with one of the interior, taken with the extremely ancient iPhone 4 I've just inherited from my best beloved.


Hopefully you'll be so captivated by the warmth of the scene that you'll think the finger smudge top left is part of the ceiling – I'm only just getting used to taking photos on a phone! Driving back to Erin Mae from Salt we crossed the Trent and Mersey. On this cold, crisp, sunny autumn day, we found one or two things were on the move.


But we're going nowhere! The fire's keeping us snug and I've got an "Essentials of England" collection playing on Erin Mae's audio. I'm racking my brains to see if there's anything I need to do before the BSS inspection tomorrow. If there is, and I don't, no doubt Dave will inform me in the morning.

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