Rose Garden

After breakfast Shane alerted me to a family of swans and nearly grown cygnets. As soon as I appeared they gathered found expectantly. We have bread to use up and so I got a heel and fed them. We’ve tried giving “healthy options” such as cucumber, carrot, peppers, seeds and they usually spit it out. At least this was seeded bread, not white sliced. They were keen but not fighting over it and the parents were hanging back at first letting the cygnets get fed first. But then when I started directing pieces to the adults they were far more forward than the youngsters, stretching their necks and both picking bread up off the deck and would have taken it right from my hand if I hadn’t been too nervous to let their large serrated beaks near my fingers.

I could hear peewit cries in the field but there was a large hedge. I thought I might see them but before that, I nervously took hold of Shane’s clippers. He’d done the main cut and done a decent job. After trimming any stragglers and shaved round the back of his neck – the inaccessible bit he can’t reach smoothly – I went for a stroll up the towpath. I couldn’t see the peewits (nor hear them any more) but did get a chance to look again at a couple of things I’d noticed in passing yesterday.

On some canals there are old milestones, or sometimes metal ones. Here the was a new milestone, celebrating the canal’s bicentenary. It showed that we had indeed travelled about half way to Garstang, when we stopped last night. 

7 sunny miles from the middle of Lancaster
Not far to go to Garstang

I also walked back to the bridge. When going towards Lancaster on this bit, I had noticed on the other side of a bridge that there was a hazard sign, warning of a “navigational obstruction” under the bridge. I thought it was strange they hadn’t warned us in advance on the other side, but now I realised it was because the sign on that side was obscured by trees. Luckily we didn’t hit whatever it was.

Watch out on the left!
Move on… Nothing to see here!

Although it was warm and pleasant, there was a forecast of possible thunder around 4, so we had an early lunch before setting off. I was somewhat denigrating about the simple bread and cheese lunch, contrasting it with the international specialities available in town, but in fact there was a choice of several cheeses and salad and condiments ( mustard and chutneys) available, so despite it being bread and cheese again, I had a whole different set of flavours today. We are in tidy up the fridge mode, as we count down to catching a train to Edinburgh.

It was a warm pleasant afternoon’s cruise and we found an easy mooring at Garstang. Not long after, the heavy rain started. I have just about worked out how to use up most perishable food items for the last two nights, but it did involve creating combinations never tried before…. Spicy fried potato and carrot, home made flatbreads with a salad of shredded mozzarella, fresh coriander, lime juice and tomato – tasty enough I’ll make them again!

The rain stopped to allow us an evening stroll in the last of the light, approaching Garstang by the scenic route, under the aqueduct, along the River Wyre, and saw a heron doing a spot of night fishing. Still it seems our mooring is only allowed for 2 days at this time of year so where to leave the boat is still undecided.

The rain might help bring the water level up on the canal and I am hoping that the slightly cooler evening will mean I won’t have to catch and evict over a dozen daddy long legs, like last night. Harmless enough but Shane is not a fan.