Tuesday, 11 August 2015

“Are you Doug?” asked Denise.


During our stay at Fradley Junction on Thursday night friends Simon, Craig and Claire came to visit. After a glass of Champagne on “Chance” we strode the few yards along to the “Mucky Duck” for a meal. We had a great evening all of us even though we were one short, with Claire’s partner Leigh unable to join us. Thanks guys and so good too see you all again. 


Friday saw us cruise on from Fradley towards Rugeley where we stopped briefly for shopping. On the way the “narrows” at Armitage always need a certain amount of concentration!


Once the shopping was done it was short trip out into the sticks where we moored up for a sunny, lazy and peaceful afternoon and a quiet night.


On Saturday it was another short trip to Great Haywood – Colwich Lock, on the way, is always a delight. When we got to Haywood Lock we met up with blog readers Denise and Steve on nb “Riverside Escape” going through the lock before us. Denise recognised us and from there on a fabulous weekend began ………


We both moored up just above Haywood Lock and, of course, the wine and nibbles soon came out. Within minutes, and with great surprise, friends John and Ali on nb “Triskaideka” arrived on the scene! After a quick shuffle of boats we got them moored up and here we all are: Doug, Denise, Steve, John and Ali.


On Sunday afternoon we all spent a couple of hours visiting the Classic Car Show at Shugborough Hall and then it was BBQ time!


On Monday our marvellous and spontaneous weekend came to an end and. John and Ali continued their journey one way while Denise and Steve and ourselves went the other.  


Deciding, with Steve and Denise, to have lunch together at the Dog and Doublet in Sandon – a gentle hour’s cruise away. On the way the lovely, and rather ornate, bridge (no 82 near Salt) was a reminder of the area’s 18th century affluence.


We enjoyed a splendid two course lunch at the Dog and Doublet with Denise and Steve while the promised weather front of torrential rain passed over. What great planning! After that we moved both boats just a bit further up the cut where there were some safer moorings (when we got back from lunch our pins had almost been pulled out of the soft ground!).


After al fresco wine and nibbles together we ended the evening in the warmth of Denise and Steve’s beautiful boat. It has been a truly perfect weekend with old friends John and Ali and new friends Steve and Denise. Thank you to you all for your splendid company.


Today, at Aston Lock, we passed the mid way point along the Trent and Mersey Canal. Just around the corner there was another surprise waiting for us!


On our approach to Stone who should be moored up and waiting for us but friends Arthur and Pat on nb “Amethyst”! After mooring up next to them it was coffee and cake (thanks to Ali from “Triskaideka”!) and a good old chat and then a walk into town for some some lunch together. We decided to stay put for the day but Arthur and Pat had to be on their way so it was a short but sweet catch up for us this time but thanks to you both for waiting to see us.

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