Santa’s Grotto

The snow remains thick and white on the towpath, and its becoming quite slippery, especially the slope leading down from Baldwins Lane. As we passed the Cassio Lock cottage we saw that the car parked outside was being fitted with wheel chains so that is how it gets along the towpath and over the steep hill to Rousebarn Lane. Driving is fine and there seemed to be less cars on the road today.

Ralphy was collected from home and we made another sortie to the Harlequin. This is definitely the last! We booked our slot for Santa’s Grotto at 11.00, and went on a search for a replacement for our faithful shopping trolley whose wheels have given up the fight after being dragged through the snow yesterday. They have been wobbling in a most alarming fashion for months so it has done us well. It seemed to me that anything we looked at wasn’t as strong as the one we have (given to me by a French girl I was working with when she left the UK and obviously very good quality). On return to the boat I see that replacement wheels can be bought on Ebay so I feel that might be the best thing to do.

To get back to Santa, we went back to wait in line at 10.50 not sure that Ralph would agree to see Santa when it came to our turn. But he went in and clambered up next to Santa. When asked what he wanted for Christmas he replied “A Lamborghini”. “We’d all like to be able to afford one of those!” said Santa. He got a present of an alphabet book.

The Harlquin was so hot we were passing out by the time we left and grateful to get out into the cooler air. Ralph was taken back to the boat for his lunch and another viewing of Happy Feet, a huge success. It takes quite a time to walk from the parking places in Baldwins Lane to the boat and back so he was finally returned home to his exhausted parents at 2.00. His similarly exhausted grandparents staggered back to the boat for a nap.

Statistics so far:-

2141.60 Miles, 1209 Locks, 120 Swing Bridges, 82 Lift Bridges, 36 Tunnels

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