Sunday, 15 May 2016

To Braunston and a Series of Visitors.

Sunday 15th May, 2016 in Braunston.
Yet another beautiful sunny morning.
Guy was perplexed by the sight of a pair of feet dangling from MM's roof.
Opposite MM was a moorhen's nest and R was trying to get a picture as one of the pair (the male?) was out looking for nest building material while the other (the female?) waited in the nest. He (the moorhen) had done several trips while we were having breakfast but when R climbed on the roof it seemed he was having trouble finding suitable material. He swam a long way down the canal right round the corner while R waited patiently for him to return. Eventually he did but still without finding anything. Meanwhile Mrs Moorhen came out of the nest and paced up and down muttering impatient chirps under her breath. Eventually he returned empty handed and was greeted with several sharp pecks on the head by his clearly dissatisfied missus. Was life ever thus? (Yes, says M!)
As this domestic altercation took place right where the sun was reflecting on the water, R was denied his photograph!
The journey down to Braunston is only a couple of miles and so only took about 40 minutes. We arrived to the sound of Braunston church bells calling the faithful to prayer. Lovely.
The two iron bridges mark the location of Braunston Turn where the Grand Union Canal meets the Oxford Canal.
Cast iron bridges of this kind are common on the Oxford as they were available "off the peg" and were much cheaper than constructing a brick or stone bridge (surely not flat packed from Ikea?)
We moored right next to the entrance to Braunston Marina and were surprised and delighted to see our friend Sue walking across the bridge. Sue and her husband Andrew own the Fernwood narrowboat "La Tortuga", which was exhibited at the Crick boat show last year.
On the other side of the entrance to Braunston Marina is the wonderful café in a narrowboat called the Gongoozler's Rest. We have eaten there many times and the prospect of second breakfast was irresistible.
As we sat having our second breakfast, a pair of swans swam proudly past with their brood of six cygnets.
While in the Gongoozler's Rest, we had fallen into a conversation with a family (Alan, Lucie and Loren) and their friend Christie. They were trying to persuade Christie that it would be a good idea to buy a narrowboat to live on as she had lived on a boat when she was younger. We invited them all to look round MM to get some ideas and to help persuade Christie that it was a good idea!
Shortly afterwards, two chaps from Cyprus, Shane and Neil, stopped by to ask about living aboard and they too came on board for the Ten Cent Tour.
The purpose of being in Braunston for the next few days is to fulfill our promise of a wedding gift trip on MM. Jon, our lovely carpenter who fitted out MM, married Panutcha on 16th May last year and our wedding gift to them was a trip with us on MM. It worked out perfectly that the dates finally agreed encompassed their first wedding anniversary (tomorrow).
We had booked them into a B&B in the village for the two nights but the plan was that they would spend the days with us.
They duly arrived at teatime so we took them up to their B&B to get settled. It turned out to be absolutely lovely - a completely self contained cottage on the High Street. Perfect!
We returned to MM for a champagne reception and a delicious dinner on board thanks to M's wonderful cooking skills (says R).
It was a splendid evening.
Today: 2 miles, 0 locks and 2.8 hours.
Trip: 73 miles, 24 locks and 47.4 hours.

1 comment:

  1. Hello again from sunny Cyprus... just spent a pleasant half hour reading your canal to-ings and fro-ings.

    We wanted to say thank you for spending some time with us explaining the positives and negatives of life on-board. As we only had a short time in the UK to carry out research for our life afloat plans, we were very grateful that you were willing for us to pick your brains.

    If you should ever wish to come over to Cyprus we would be pleased to return the hospitality - have a peek at our world at to get a taste of life in rural Cyprus!

    Thanks once again.