Friday, 9 October 2015

Back down The Ashby 2

Tuesday 22nd. Overcast with occasional rain showers. This is not how it's supposed to be! We pass Charity Wharf with its bizarre collection of mad dummies and decaying boats. Funny how these don't feature in Waterways World ....
We reach the Marston Junction, a place of many pylons, between The Ashby and the Coventry canals and make a very sharp turn into the Coventry for a few miles before reaching Hawkesbury and another big turn into The Oxford.  I'm singing Paul Simon "I hear the drizzle of the rain, like a memory it falls ..." and I'm feeling full of reminiscence, but the canal pulls me on. A pair of swans with an extraordinary eight cygnets all shimmy alongside in a long string and I'm back to concentrating on the water ahead.

Our continuing journey to Newbold is peppered with brief heavy showers followed occasionally by a blast of sunshine to warm our backs and light up the cut, revealing the first autumnal hints which hide invisibly when it rains. At one stage the rain falls so fiercely it peppers the surface water making it look like a rough and muddy farm track.
But it's the equinox and evening brings calm and golden rays. Mooring at The Barley Mow next to the Newbold tunnel we are alarmed by a threatening clunk from somewhere down in the bilges. Turns out there is a protruding ledge at the moorings and, concerned that this might damage the hull, we tie the gangplank to the side to act as a large fender. It works well and, thanks to a couple of pints and a good meal at The Barley Mow, we sleep undisturbed.

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