Norton Junction

Enjoyable as it has been in Braunston we have to move on. The sun was shining today and it seemed as good an opportunity as any so we headed off towards the locks at 10.30. Even though we have worked through the Braunston locks many times before its been some time since we last encountered a flight of double locks so it seemed quite hard work. We were hard on the heels of a pair of roped-together boats and as no other boats appeared we had to ascend on our own, which means that the steerer (in this case Alan) has to run to the front of the boat to throw up the bow rope so it can be fastened to a bollard and then run back to the stern to do the same. Then we can open up the paddles and fill the lock quickly. Actually the Braunston locks are fairly shallow so that’s not a difficult operation but the gates did seem very heavy. We met three sets of boats coming down which should have been a help but two left both gates open so I had an extra heavy gate to pull shut. I am sounding very whingy but I came down with a tummy bug last night (maybe the prawn starter) and I’m still feeling miserable. I could have swopped places with Alan but by then I was pretty muddy as the towpaths were in a very bad condition so it all seemed too much effort.

We steamed through the tunnel in quick time and without meeting any boats and moored at Norton Junction above the Buckby Locks, the first time that we have found a space there. Usually we have to go through the first lock to the moorings below. They are prettier and more preferable moorings but another boater told us this morning that they were moored there last night and the pound had dropped about a foot overnight. After spending the night with a severe lean twice in the past we try to avoid it at all costs. There was a hire boat behind us when we arrived and both they and the boat behind them told Alan that they found it impossible to get any TV reception. Alan put up our aerial and managed to get analogue on four channels. We offered the loan of DVDs to the hire boaters who had grandchildren who were obviously getting fed up but they decided to go on to Braunston. It was quite late and I imagine they would be arriving in the dark. Several boats passed us in the dark over the week since the clocks went back: seems people are still adjusting their internal clocks.

Its pretty cold tonight and we are low on diesel so the fire wouldn’t stay alight and we have put the central heating on. I have piled on the layers with a thick jumper bought in NZ many years ago (from an expensive ladies wear shop but it does remind me of something a Kiwi sheep shearer would wear) on top of a thick fleece, both brown so I look a bit like a very rotund teddy bear. I just need to add a scarf for the full Rupert look. We will refuel tomorrow at Weedon: on a cold night there’s nothing like a glowing fire. Nothing much on TV anyway as we missed most of Downton Abbey so we will watch another series of the Beiderbeck Tapes. We have loved these ever since they were first on TV in the 80s. Like the Vicar of Dibley, another favourite, they can be regularly re-watched. Alan is making a goat’s cheese souffle which seems a good idea for dodgy tummies (he is also suffering) and there is much furious beating going on with a hand whisk. Being the one to write the blog suddenly seems like a very good excuse!

Back on the Grand Union

Norton Junction

Today we did 4.64Miles and 6 Locks

Statistics so far:-

2074.04 Miles, 1138 Locks, 118 Swing Bridges, 82 Lift Bridges, 34 Tunnels


2 Responses to Norton Junction

  1. Jaqueline Almdale says:

    Hello Frances,
    I am a medicinal herbalist and I highly recommend a home remedy that works every time: take 1/8tsp. of apple cider vinegar (must be cider vinegar) in 6 -8 oz. of water. Sip and then repeat again 45 minutes later. The cider vinegar will change your entire system from acid to alkaline in about thirty minutes. Bacteria and most viruses cannot long survive in an alkaline environment. You should feel this concoction gently “push” all the nasties down though your colon over a matter of hours, followed by a gentle, cool sensation of relief. this works for tummy flu, salmonella, food poisoning, eating something one has an intolerance for–just about anything colon related. Feel better soon!
    warm regards,
    Pullman WA USA

  2. nblazydays says:

    Hi Jaqueline. my mother always took some cider vinegar every day (though in what quantity I really don’t know). Though forgetful in her last few years she remained agile until she died at 94. We did have some cider vinegar on the boat so I tried your suggestion but just as I took the second dose we started a mammoth descent of seven locks with dreadfully heavy gates to be opened (some almost defeated me) & muddy towpaths in between so not the best circumstances. However I think my stomach does feel better this evening and I might repeat tomorrow.
    It was a very nice surprise to receive a message from the US! Thank you for writing!
    All the best,

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