Tuesday, 13 June 2017

MM as Street Theatre?

Tuesday 13th June 2017 in Kidderminster.
A rather cool and overcast morning. Beside our mooring was a little tea room called "The Old Smithy", which was exactly what it once was. It had already closed for the day when we arrived last night, so we thought that we would go for a coffee this morning after breakfast.
It was a lovely little place, run by a local lady in conjunction with the pub on the opposite side of the canal. M had a sausage sandwich and we had to wait for the sausages to be brought over from the pub before the lady could cook them. M said it was definitely worth the wait!
On the windowsill was a box of books, apparently part of an old boatman's collection that was being sold. R found a couple of gems on the old waterways and bought them to read on MM.
Wolverley Church is set high above the canal on a sandstone ridge and we walked up through lovely grasses to take a look around.
While M was putting an entry in the Visitors' Book, R found a friend in the porch.
Walking back to MM, we passed the local "pound" used in the old days to house stray animals until their owners could be found. Resourcefully, it had been carved out of the solid sandstone with three caves as "stables" at the back.
The towpath was busy with walkers and cyclists as we set off. We were moored only a hundred yards from Wolverley lock.
The lock runs right next to "The Lock" pub and, as usual, there was quite a crowd to watch us go through the lock. The guide books warn that boaters will become part of the street entertainment; but whether as comedy, tragedy or farce is down to the individual boater! As usual, M acquitted herself brilliantly - so the onlookers only saw how it "should" be done.
We cruised on as far as Kidderminster, which we had passed through three years ago but that time we hadn't stopped. We moored up on 5-day moorings right opposite an enormous Sainsbury's and retail park, which included a Costa, so R was happy.
The towpath was very busy with people coming and going and many of them stopped to chat as R washed down MM's roof, which was covered in twigs and leaves and the occasional gift from passing incontinent birdlife.

We walked up into the centre of town in search of a postbox and passed over this attractive lock bridge on the way.
Today: 2 miles, 2 locks and 1.1 hours.
Trip: 51 miles, 40 locks and 33.4 hours.

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