Other than that (which I really do feel badly about) it's been a good day -
Day 4, Swarkestone to Holme Lock
- as it's seen us get onto our favourite river, with our favourite town in sight tomorrow.
We didn't get a very early start as we spent a while fixing the anchor, then quickly got stuck on the bottom for the first of three times (although we did manage to avoid the notorious rocks this time). Usually now when we end up on the bottom it's in the course of passing an oncoming boat - in one case today a plug ugly widebeam, on the Trent and Mersey. Just because you can get your boat into the locks, doesn't mean it's suitable for the waterway! There was no avoiding that one, though I wonder whether sometimes I'm still being too generous in showing willingness to move aside. I try to adjust my speed so as to meet oncoming boats in a wide and unobstructed bit of water, but this rarely works because the other boat invariably slows right down, when if they'd kept up a reasonable speed they could be past the narrows/fallen tree/shallow bit before I get there. Then when we do meet in the worst place and they end up in the hedge or I end up on the bottom, why do I still feel like they must be thinking it's my fault?
Oh dear, this is what happens when I start writing without a clear plan in mind, rambling all over the place. So it's been a day of contrasts, big river, Beeston Cut through Nottingham, then out onto the big river again. Lots of cruisers and a gorgeous wooden steam launch at Cranfleet Lock. Tonight we have stopped above Holme Lock, the first manned lock of the Trent, and hope to make it to Newark by tomorrow evening.
This evening we got talking to someone who not only knew, and worked for, Richard Barnett, but also worked for Blue Line. We had a fascinating conversation, shivering in a brisk breeze - if only we were nearer a pub where we could have continued the conversation. It's wonderful - and sometimes a bit over-awing to meet people like that. A bit awkward too sometimes when we start out talking to them without realising just how much they know - and how much more than us.
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