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Archive for May 11th, 2014

Boat Blog: The Odyssey 2014 – Day 8

Posted by indigodream on 11 May, 2014

Please support us - even a tiny donation can put a smile on a retired greyhound's face..

Please support us – even a tiny donation can put a smile on a retired greyhound’s face..

Saturday 26th April

Fenny Stratford to Stoke Bruerne

The familiar view at Fenny Stratford..

The familiar view at Fenny Stratford..

It had been a busy week and, as always, the idea of travelling up to the boat on Friday night was swiftly rejected in favour of an early start on Saturday. Yeah, early, us! We almost made it, arriving at the boat around 10am. We loaded the boat and I moved the car to a convenient parking spot by Fenny Stratford lock. I walked back to the boat and we set off to one of the few locks of the day! We stopped off at the rubbish point while Richard was getting the lock ready – there’s a bridge to be swung and although the drop is only around 12 inches, it seemed to take an age!

There there’s the long lock-free pound through Milton Keynes – another great stretch of canal , all the more so for being unexpected. I was looking out for the abundant crab-apple trees along the towpath – there should be a bumper crop this year πŸ™‚

Although we had a largely lock-free day, I found that I was much more relaxed without Ty on board. I missed him terribly at home, but if he’s unhappy, I’m unhappy. I still felt guilty for leaving him at Sarah’s, even though I now he’s enjoying 5-star luxury care at her house.

We had made arrangements to cruise with a friend Emma, partner Nick and son Dane (hope I spelled that correctly) – Emma came cruising with us a couple of years ago with her greyhounds Holly and Harry, her mum (aka Grandma Bobbins from Twitter) with greyhound Blue and labrador Ben (that trip was completed by Whitbywoof’s extended pack – Gilmour, Kryssy, Billy Whippet and Jodie) – that was a record-breaking trip with the most dogs ever on boardΒ  – TEN! Today’s cruise was less ambitious, Emma’s greyhounds are on holiday with their Grandma, but we did welcome Rocky, Nick’s soppy staffie on board. Archie and Rocky were busy, busy, busy – Olympic Looking at its finest. The rest of the hounds were uninterested – they hadn’t had enough recovery time between cruises!

Rocky was so excited by Olympic Looking - but the deck was built for taller hounds :-p

Rocky the staffie was so excited by Olympic Looking – but the deck was built for taller hounds :-p

So yet again we had good company and good weather – you just can’t ask for more. We had a companionable cruise from Wolverton to Cosgrove; Richard worked us through Cosgrave lock then cycled back to Wolverton station to catch the train to Bletchley to pick up the car. In the meantime, we cruised along the long lock-free pound to Stoke Bruerne bottom lock. Nick and Dane had a go at steering – they’re naturals, but I took over for the Stoke Bruerne locks – by the time we got there in the late afternoon, the weather had turned chilly and blustery making for some tricky manoeuvring.

We’d already had a lovely day when we arrived at Stoke Bruerne, but there was more to come. Richard had dropped the car off in Stoke Bruerne and cycled back to meet the boat. No sooner was he on board than we spotted Kathryn, old friend from nb Leo No 2, waiting for us at bottom lock – she worked us up the flight with Richard – fantastic. We moored up near the museum (Kathryn said it would be ok and we believed her!). We all decamped to the Boat pub. where Emma kindly bought us dinner. The bar area in the Boat is dog-friendly and was soon covered with snoozing greyhounds stretched out on their sheepskins. Luckily we got in before the locals – there wasn’t room for many more in there by the time we’d colonised it πŸ™‚

Its not so long since Kathryn joined the community at Stoke Bruerne but absolutely everyone who visited the pub knew her – she’s become an invaluable part of village life and is already on an unbelievable number of committees – wow! The powers that be need to take note, today’s “pensioners” were yesterday’s movers and shakers, and they haven’t forgotten how to do it!

We had a most convivial evening, but by 9pm we were all pretty weary and Herbie hound was restless – we found out later that he was thirsty – oops, we hadn’t thought to give him a drink at the pub. He was also in a bit of pain – the vet’s confirmed that he has a huge corn on his front foot and it was obviously getting him down. The other dogs were exhausted, though Rocky the staffie was irrepressible. I piled Emma, Nick, Dane and Rocky into the car and ran them back to Wolverton – no distance at all by road! By the time I got back to the boat, everyone was asleep, though Archie hound is always good for a greeting πŸ™‚

Photoblog:

Ooh, we've always see this boat at Paddingon Basin...

Ooh, we’ve always see this boat at Paddington Basin…

Bridges  make such sheltered places for mooring don't you think?

Bridges make such sheltered places for mooring don’t you think?

Bridge 84 - it obviously been patched up but it looks very dodgy to me...

Bridge 84 – it obviously been patched up but it looks very dodgy to me…

What makes an "aaaaw" moment? Ladies, wine and greyhounds :-D

What makes an “aaaaw” moment? Ladies, wine and greyhounds πŸ˜€

More gGreyhounds on the towpath at Stoke Bruerne - it's greyhound central :-)

More greyhounds on the towpath at Stoke Bruerne – it’s greyhound central πŸ™‚

Our canine crew were very excited to see the other greys Well, (Rocky was excited by everything!)..

Our canine crew were very excited to see the other greys though in all fairness, Rocky was excited by everything!

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