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Published: April 17th 2014
After leaving the dock the first step
is to go through the opened foot bridge at St. Katharine Docks heading toward the lock.
Hard to believe that almost a month has gone by since the last update to the blog. We have been busy and I have been working on getting the blog entry about our trip to Scotland up, but it has taken longer than I thought to sort through all the photos and write the details up as we saw quite a bit in such a short time. Yes, I am still not done with it, but will continue to work on it. In the meantime I will give you a quick update to let you know that we have left London, but didn’t go too far!
On Tuesday, April 8th
bright and early at 7:30 AM we left St. Katharine Docks in London in the company of 2 other boats moving out of our winter “home”. It is always bitter sweet as we have made many friends while here in London. There was quite a nice size contingency of American, Canadian, British (well one of them was Scottish and right now the jury is out as to whether they consider themselves British) and Australian wintering in London. We met for coffee once a week exchanging ideas of things to do,
In the Lock Talking to friends
waiting til it opens so we can enter the Thames
the veterans helping the newbies navigate their way through London i.e. how to get the cheapest tickets for a show, the free concerts being offered that week and how to get the best fares for the tube (subway) and bus. The bonus was we got a chance to get to know some very interesting people. Hopefully our paths will cross again someday.
Many of our friends despite the early hour came by to see us off at the lock we had to go through to get out to the Thames. Of course Ed had his music playing and had queued up just the perfect songs for saying goodbye. Thanks everybody for the great sendoff! We traveled down the Thames in the company of two other boats, Ed and Sue on Angel Louise and Sandi and Colin on Taransay Mhor. A bonus was that we were able to take pictures of each other as we sailed away from London. The trip went smoothly and we did quite well with timing the tide so it helped our speed as we moved out to the mouth of the river. As we move down the river we were able to look back and
identify many of the places we had first seen last October and were now so familiar with. The buildings which became the landmarks by which we navigated the city - the Shard, the Gherkin and our personal favorite the Walkie-Talkie. It’s amazing how familiar this place has become; navigating the streets and the subways (the tube) has become second- nature. When getting off the tube we don't even hear the reminder “to mind the gap” anymore that we found somewhat funny early on. What a wonderful place to spend six months - the music, the pomp and circumstance, the British love of subtle humor and the ever present history waiting around every corner.
When we got out to the mouth of the river and had to turn into the next river that would take us to our new “home”of Chatham for a few weeks we had the winds against us and we truly were reminded we were in a sailboat and how it is to heel! One of the boats with us veered off and was going to another destination which left us to continue our journey up the Medway River in the company of Sandi and Colin.
Friends Sending Us Off from SKD
Thanks to Peter, Sue, Kingsley, Ann, Nigel & Gus for coming out so early - also Helen who I didn't catch in the photos!
You must enter a lock to get into the Chatham Maritime Marina and fortunately for us we went in second with Colin & Sandi there to help us tie up, it was a tight squeeze. We were greeted by a warm welcome from the staff and assigned a dock next to Sandi and Colin. This will be a nice “home”for the next few weeks while we get a few more things done on the boat, explore a few more places and give the weather a chance to warm up. Hopefully we will also get a chance to meet up with some cruising friends that live in this part of England.
The next day Ed and Sue on Angel Louise came to join us in the marina for a few days which was a pleasant surprise. As we always say, you never say good-bye to cruisers; you never know when our paths will cross again!
We are sharing a rental car with Sandi and Colin for a week so we are doing some exploring of southern England. Will try to catch you up on those travels as well as complete the entry about Scotland in the near future. Just
Our Last Time
being this close to the Tower Bridge of London by boat.
wanted to give you a quick update on our whereabouts for now. Our plans are to start watching for a good weather window to cross over to the Netherlands and then the Baltic the last part of April. As always we hope you're all doing well and wish you the best.
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