Last night I sat on the back cabin step and listened to a Tawnay Owl sitting in the tree right next to the boat. The owl happily called several times before flying off. My only wish was that I had night vision glasses, so I could have seen it as well.
A crisp frosty morning greeted me as I stepped off of the boat with Paddy. Winter is officially here and I love it. Before we left our overnight mooring, I cooked some Steak and Kidney with Onions, which would be going into a pie for dinner, but it needed to simmer in the back cabin stove first. Both fires were stoked up and the boats engine kicked into life. I cast off the bow and took down the TV aerial, whilst Keith cast off the stern rope. 9.25am we were on our way. Just as we past the marina entrance Ali waved from NB Caretta and Tim was out on the towpath to say good morning. We had a quick chat before wishing each other a "Happy Christmas". Onward past the hire boats of the Ashby Canal Company. There was a thick frost on the roof of the boats.
A pony stood like a statue in a field, with only its winter coat to keep out the cold.
Although it was a frosty start to the day, the morning began with beautiful sunshine and no wind at all, which meant it was quite warm. 10am I made us coffee and produced some hot sausage rolls from the back cabin stove, to warm us through as we carried on our way.
I cannot believe that Christmas is almost with us again, but it is nice to see others getting into the spirit of things. This time last year we were still frozen in and looking forward to our Christmas dinner at The Angel Hotel in Market Harborough.
With the sun low in the sky, the clouds were making pretty patterns in the sky. By 11am the sky had clouded over and the temperature had dropped, which meant it had gotten cold. I had to put my gloves on, because my fingers felt like they were going to drop off.
We arrived near Burton Hastings at 11.50am, we moored up where we had first seen Alison and Ian on Gosty Hill, when we came up the Ashby Canal, we knew it would be a good deep mooring, because they got Gosty Hill in and they were loaded down with coal and diesel. We pulled in and moored up and I put the TV aerial up. The kettle was boiling on the back cabin stove, so I also put some soup on to warm through for lunch, which was enjoyed with slices of bread and for seconds mince pies.
We are going to stay here for the weekend, so I may walk up into Burton Hastings to have a look at another of the Ashby Canal's villages, this one was named after the Hastings family who held the manor until 1529. It does not have any stores, but does have a the church of St. Botolph, which will be worth looking at no doubt.
The Steak and Kidney is cooked so a pie will have to be made for dinner tonight. I also need to get some sweeping up done, because Paddy's hair is gathering again as is the dried mud bought in on our boots. We run an open boat where no one need take their boots off, unless of course they want too.
Chat soon xx