Our luck was in with the locks, with every gate wide open we sailed straight in. It was bright and breezy and the autumn leaves tumbled from the trees as we travelled up through a quiet Camden and past London Zoo.
Back into waters that are set to become more familiar as time goes by. After two winters out we’ve decided to take a mooring and enjoy the combination of Murk’s paws and concrete, rather than him squelching through endless gloopy mud.
- Two people and one dog create an enormous amount of condensation
- We don’t miss having lots of ‘stuff’
- Living uses an awful lot of water and magics bags and bags of rubbish
- Narrowboating is great for your geography
- It’s not rough Up North
- You get to meet some lovely people (we will never ever forget Sue, Kev and the water tank)
- A home doesn’t have to be a house
Best bits is a tricky one. There’s too little time before the end of the world for Nick to decide on his, but generally speaking the experiences that spring to mind tend to be the ones that verged on, or were scary…
- Liverpool Link, Thames, York.
And the top moorings…
There’s little left to say. The end is where the journey begins.
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That’s all folks
Not one turn of the prop happened today, instead we stayed put and winterised the boat – not in a drain and leave it kind of way but in a re-jiggling to make as much space for coal and dog food as possible kind of a way. The triple glazing went up too – lovely stuff!
With just a couple of boats passing by there wasn’t much action, although the whole area is teaming with swans and geese and sheep. With the chimney swept, anchor away, coal storage sorted, cupboards cleaned and windows plasticed we’re ready for the worst the winter can throw our way.
Same spot, another day, another lucky rainbow.
The river continues to curl deeper into Essex and on towards Bishop’s Stortfort, but the rain continues to fall and the levels are rising. The pitter patter on the roof isn’t creating the cozy, comforting, snug feeling it usually does. The locks are neither here nor there, at 13.25ft they’re wider than single but not enough space for two boats meaning that roping is a certainty as the paddles are pretty sharp. Opened in the 1780’s the canalised navigation was originally part of grander plans to link London to Kings Lynn, main cargos included: wheat, beans, peas, flour, coal and pigeon dung.
On past Parndon Mill that’s been immaculately restored since the 1960’s and serves as a creative place for artists with all sorts of skills. With a long history dating back to a mention in the Domesday Book the mill has fallen victim to numerous fires, due to the combustible nature of the flour milled from the grain produced from the rich surrounding farm land.
…And then we came to Harlow.
Moored just by the station, with a waterpoint just a boat’s length back it wasn’t rural idylic but there were plus points. Plus the town is just a short walk away. Brain child of world-renowned architect Sir Frederick Gibberd, the town’s promoters promise, ‘Whether you’re planning a few hours, a few days or a lifetime here, Harlow won’t disappoint.’ A New Town, built after World War II to ease overcrowding caused by bombing during the Blitz it boasts Britain’s first pedestrian precinct and ‘modern style’ residential tower block. With rail links to London Liverpool Street and proximity to the M11 it has secured itself as part of the London commuter belt. Like it or not, you can’t argue with anywhere that offers up Poundland, Wilkos, 99p Store AND Savers all one after the other.
It was set to be a quiet night since the trains have all but stopped but a car has rolled up, crammed full of passengers who seem to enjoy listening to the same thumping beats, over and over and over. Okay bring back the rain.