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  • clivenmel

Oct 29th

Normal 0 false false false /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0cm 5.4pt 0cm 5.4pt; mso-para-margin:0cm; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:10.0pt; font-family:"Times New Roman"; mso-ansi-language:#0400; mso-fareast-language:#0400; mso-bidi-language:#0400;} It was very cold last night!!!   Fortunately we have a wonderful stove, a great central heating system and a lovely warm quilt.  However during the night when I stuck my arm out of the quilt I nearly got frostbite!  I have to explain that our bedroom is extremely "well ventilated" due to the rear door and hatch.  The boat itself is insulated with foam between the metal outer shell and the wood lined interior, however the rear door isn�t, nor is the sliding hatch.  Plus, the rear door has vents in it, for ventilation!!  Quite often in the mornings we have condensation on the walls and especially on the door and hatch � this morning it was really drippy!  Still it is no real hardship, we just give everything a wipe over with a cloth.  But I would really like to come up with some sort of �curtain� that could be used at night to cover the rear hatch and door � it�s a bit of a challenge as it would have to go horizontally along the ceiling to cover the hatch and then vertically to cover the door � any suggestions from you lot out there?!  I have thought of Velcro and maybe a bar to go across the top of the door � I am sure there must be something we could do � answers on a postcard (or rather email in our case!).   Well, once we had thawed out this morning and had a cup of tea and some breakfast we set off once again to tackle the last two locks in the Audlem Flight and the five in the Adderley Flight � it turned out to be a lot easier than expected because there were so many boats on the canal � just about every lock was set for us as there was other boats coming down the flight.  These locks were a treat to operate after some of the ones we have experienced on our journey.  The paddles were easy to wind and the gates simple to open � lovely!  Mind you Clive had a few hairy moments � about every other lock on this stretch has a sluice to divert water to avoid flooding (this would have been very welcome on some of the other canals we�ve been on!) these sluices are on the right as the boat approaches the lock and are running quite fast and heavy.  They have a tendency to push the boat across the canal, quite forcefully sometimes!  We met one boater coming down who reported that a boater they had met going up the flight had had a pot of soup on the go � it evidently ended up decorating the walls of the boat!!  We had a very close call when the boat hit the entrance to a lock with quite a belt.  At the time I heard a clatter and on checking it turned out to be one of my plants (I only have two!) which had fallen over in the cratch.  We thought we had come off very lightly, however that evening when I was making dinner I reached up to the cabinet to get a couple of plates and realised to my horror that the top shelf, with all my crystal glasses on it, was on a sharp tilt!  I shrieked for Clive to come and help � I gently straightened the shelf and held on to it whilst he took all the glasses out � amazingly not one glass had even so much as a chip!  It turned out that one of the little support pegs had sheared off.  We have removed the shelf for the time being and all my glasses are now stashed in the wine rack!  We will need to do a few running repairs whilst we are holed up over the next few weeks!   Anyway once we had come through Lock No 1 on the Adderley Flight I realised to my delight that it was the last lock I would be doing for several weeks � yippee!  I hope I don�t become fat and lazy!   After a gentle cruise we arrived at the outskirts of Market Drayton � we found a coal merchants first and stocked up on smokeless fuel for the stove and then we moored up on a stretch of canal where we can actually stay for five days without having to move on.  However Clive has just gone to suss out a marina which is just a little further along the canal to see if we could moor there over the weekend whilst we go up to Huddersfield.  Since we have been moored up this afternoon so many boats have passed us, in both directions.  It is amazing just how many boats are still out cruising - many are holiday boats but a lot of them are live-aboards like ours - it just goes to show that we are not the only mad boaters on the canals!   Well, that�s it for now.  No photographs today I'm afraid, we didn�t have time to take any!

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