Day 5 - Canal Mode Activated

Published: July 14th 2019
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Moving InMoving InMoving In

Not nearly as cramped as the "Bean" (our tiny travel trailer)
Day 5

We woke early, excited for our Market trip and Canal boat adventure. The breakfast at the Holiday Inn Express was less than stellar, so we decided we would get some food at the Market.

The Longborough market is said to have won recent awards, and has been around for 800 years. It sounded amazing and exciting.

The weather had different opinions. The drive through the driving rain took a lot longer than we expected. When we arrived and grabbed the last parking spot, we saw dozens of people leaving the open air market, hiding under umbrellas (it had just started raining in Longborough). All of the prepared food vendors were shut, and we didn't spend long at other shops outside of Boots and a few fruit and bread vendors. Even if the weather had cooperated, the market did not consist more than a standard farmer's market in the US, plus some extra vendors. Compared to the markets in London, this was very disappointing.

We visited, instead, a grocery store. We discovered (or were reminded) about a few things: Some items are just missing (powdered drinks, like lemonade or Gatorade, baby carrots,
Hamster EntertainmentHamster EntertainmentHamster Entertainment

Hamster had a great seat on the boat.
stick pretzels); you put a pound coin into the shopping cart and get it back when you return the cart (and people look at you funny when you offer to take their cart back for them); Food in the UK is so much less expensive than in the US.

We hurried to the Barton Turns Marina to pick up our boat. We were met by the staff from Aqua Narrowboats who gave us time to load our luggage and groceries onto the boat before delivering very thorough training (they call it Tuition in the UK). We then headed out onto the canal with our instructor to do some practice driving. We were so awesome (all 3 of us, including Michelle), that the instructor got off much sooner than he normally does and let us go on our way.

We soon discovered that life on the canal moves very slowly. The exciting bits (mooring, locks, skinny bits, accidentally driving into trees, running the boat aground) are broken up by long periods of quiet, contemplative driving with the engine humming at your feet.

We ate dinner at our favorite canal spot from previous

Our Aqua Narrowboats trainer gave us great Tuition (how they say training). They would not let us actually pilot in the marina, though.
land-based trips (The Swan at Fradley Junction), and continued until the sun set.

Anne says that our experience with long-haul RV trips in the USA helped make us comfortable right away with living out of the boat, and the operations of mooring, checking the mechanics of the engine daily, etc. The boat is much bigger than our tiny travel trailer, which makes it hard to steer, but also makes it easy for three of us to exist in together.

The slow current gently rocks the boat back and forth all night, which will help everyone sleep soundly tonight, and get up for a longer day tomorrow.

Additional photos below
Photos: 11, Displayed: 11


The Way OutThe Way Out
The Way Out

Beyond this bridge lies danger... unrestricted piloting permission for brand new boaters. Beware!
Straight and TrueStraight and True
Straight and True

Anne piloted the boat exceptionally well on her first try.
Permit? Permit?

We don't need no stinking Permit. Michelle did just fine piloting the boat.
The SwanThe Swan
The Swan

Our favorite pub on the canals, still, after 5 years.
Home, Sweet HomeHome, Sweet Home
Home, Sweet Home

Home for the night. Quiet and Serene
The PaddlesThe Paddles
The Paddles

We are now very familiar with this device, in all of it's forms.
Pull, Pull, PullPull, Pull, Pull
Pull, Pull, Pull

Sometimes it takes the combined strength of two people.

The Skipper (Tony) did not always steer straight. Usually it was on account of him going too fast.

Tot: 2.569s; Tpl: 0.048s; cc: 10; qc: 57; dbt: 0.0444s; 2; m:saturn w:www (; sld: 2; ; mem: 1.4mb