Tuesday, 2 June 2015

A bit of a wind up

Whilst wind has been the dominant feature of this year's weather, April excepted, I've also noticed something about the pattern that I hadn't before, possibly because the wind hasn't been as strong. This is that the worst of the wind follows, rather than accompanies the rain. So this week we had a lot of rain yesterday afternoon, with chilly temperatures and some wind, but today has been much warmer and largely dry with a lot of wind.

We set out at half seven after a quick breakfast and got to the top of Atherstone at eight. The first half of the flight went by uneventfully, Sheila locking and yours truly steering. There was room to tie just after the A5 bridge for the obligatory visit to Aldi. Having bought mostly fresh food, we got back to the boat at ten. I only stopped long enough to put the chilled stuff in the fridge before doing my share of the hard work.

Things went much more slowly now. There were a lot of boats going our way and not many coming up, so it was nearly twelve before we emerged from lock 11. The wind, which up until now had merely been awkward at worst, became a serious problem with fierce gusts making it necessary to crab along at times. Rather than slog on towards Polesworth or even to get past Grendon Dock, I spotted an enticing bit of Armco about halfway between the long term moorings and Grendon and decided we'd done enough for the day.

It proved difficult to get the bow close enough to the bank, what with the effect of going astern in pretty shallow water and the wind which had decided to blow up the stern and push it into the bank, forcing the bow out. Eventually, Sheila made a jump for it, only to find that one of the big fenders had formed a passionate attachment for her ankle and tried to come with her.

She fell awkwardly onto the towpath with her feet tangled up in the fender line and still projecting over the edge of the Armco. I finally managed to get the stern near enough the bank to get off holding the centreline whilst Sheila managed to roll clear. I was left holding the baby boat until she was able to sort herself out. Fortunately, it's her ankle, not her toes, that took the damage, mainly a large bruise on her calf. Once the first mooring lines were secure, I sent her on board to get her boots and wet weather gear off and to take a dose of ibuprofen to help control the inflammation.

Once I'd tied Sanity Again and done all the end of boating things, I was able to put the rest of the shopping away and get lunch ready. Sheila has spent the afternoon with her leg elevated and swathed in a towel containing the last of a bag of frozen peas, which strategy has reduced the bruise quite a bit, I'm pleased to say.

It's been an afternoon for loafing and dozing, as may be imagined. I've rescheduled the Ocado delivery to next Tuesday, done a couple of emails and a posting to Canal World, back online after a prolonged outage over the weekend, about changing a CAV 296 filter. The wind has been tremendous, rocking and rolling the boat on her mooring. I'm just sorry for all those who had to carry on boating this afternoon.

Tomorrow we'll make an early start, Sheila's battle scars permitting, with the aim of catching up on the schedule and getting to Sutton Road Bridge.


Anonymous said...

Hi, this is Sue from Cheeky B, the boat that we grounded right in front of you some time ago... hope Sheila is feeling better, falling is not a very nice thing to happen to you. Sending our regards. x

Bruce in Sanity said...


Good to hear from you!

Sheila's leg is very colourful, but making a steady recovery I'm pleased to say. She says thanks for your good wishes :)

Have a good summer

All the best