We have been to Kinver before, when we met Paul and Richard for the day, and knew it had good parking near the canal. So when Stuart and Wendy wanted to meet us on the 28th and had a British Cycle Quest clue there, it seemed a good place to stop. We aimed for getting there the night before.
We were able to moor very near the parking place. They weren’t arriving until the afternoon so we had time to tidy and sweep. Shane did some work on the cupboard and made good progress. No job seems to be as simple as it first appears though: seeing that it was close to the chain operating the blind, he went on to take that apart to move the mechanism to the other end, a bit of a fouter, but well worth the effort for something that will make a twice daily task easier.
The weather was fine and I went on my own quest for lunch and found a well stocked deli. Better and better. I also saw some scary looking newish buildings perched above a crumbling rock.
Over the last few days, as well as fallen apples in the water, (mainly green – cooking apples, I am guessing) I have been seeing lots of trees full of red apples, with none on the ground. No one seems to be collecting them. Kinver had a fine example of this kind of tree, near the river.
As Wendy and Stuart’s ETA passed, I became concerned. The weather had taken a turn for the worse and it was wet and wild out there. Wendy messaged that they were stuck in traffic. I decided I might have time to bake a cake, and there is nothing like starting a task to make the guests arrive in the middle of it! As usual I hadn’t used a recipe so the lemon drizzle was a bit stickier than it should be, but tasty anyway. They came bearing many gifts, and next time I can use an actual mixing bowl rather than a jug. Thanks also to Wendy for photos for the blog!
We had a lovely evening with Stuart and Wendy, but neither their schedule, nor the weather allowed them time to come on a trip. They promised to work some locks next time. We can look forward to that. We may get down their neck of the woods next summer.
I saw the river in Kinver this morning was about 3 times the size it had been yesterday. We had made contact and agreed to aim for Droitwich by Monday, but following last night’s rainfall, one of the waterways on our route very near there is closed as the river is in spate. Let’s hope it and the River Severn are navigable when we get there.
After the lashing rain, we had a bright day with only one short sharp shower. As usual we encountered some enthusiastic onlookers, several of whom offered to help with gates, but not many other boats seemed to be in the move.
A lone boatman appeared behind us at the first lock. I was surprised he kept up so well with us when working alone and after we’d stopped for lunch, he was the one in front of us at the next lock. As I got out to work a lock with him, I was surprised to see him bring his boat into the lock, without getting back on. I knew he had left the engine running while it was roped up and he was at the lock. The boat (Two Jays) sailed smoothly in and out of the lock, with him on the bank his hand in his pocket. I asked if he had a remote control. “Yes,” he said! He decided that at 73, he was too old to be going up and down the lock ladders. Evidently not too old to run a boat and work locks on his own. He is now moored not far behind us, so he may catch up with us again tomorrow.