A cold start to Friday with a frost and a light dusting of snow. We were awake early, so as per-usual we sat in bed with a cuppa and chatted whilst watching the BBC news. One of the big discussions was about hospital food and how the UK is lagging behind as far as standards over food are concerned in our hospitals, I think this topic has come about because James Martin is about to begin a second series of Operation Hospital Food which begins on the 25th February at the Birmingham's Royal Orthopaedic Hospital. In the first series he was at Scarborough General Hospital. I personally have not had a reason to complain about hospital food when I have been in hospital, but I have seen people in hospital having food bought in by friends and family because they could not eat the food the hospital supplied. When Keith was in Kettering Hospital, there food was very good.
What do you think of hospital food??
Once up, I relit the back cabin fire and left that to get going whilst I took Paddy for his walk past all the moored boats. On returning to the boat the fire was roaring nicely, so having put on more coal I shut it down and began cooking chicken for dinner, which will be a Chicken Pasanda with Rice. After breakfast I loaded up our coal trolley with the toilet cassette and a bag of rubbish and headed for the sanitary station, which is still in operation on the old BW yard despite the building work going on. I did discover though having emptied the cassette, the water tap is not working, so I presume they turn the water off whilst they are digging up the ground with the digger. So if your coming this way for water, you may not get any.
After our first coffee of the morning, I suggested we go out for a walk around the reservoirs. Because my Canon camera is not working we took Keith’s out with us and set off up the towpath. There was a bracing breeze and a few snow flakes falling, but on such a lovely morning it seemed a shame to sit on the boat, when we could have a walk.
Whilst walking on the opposite bank Jacqueline put her head out of the galley window to say “Hello”, we had a quick natter before heading off for our walk and said we would call on her and Les on our way back.
We crossed the lock and walked around Startops Reservoir.
The footpaths are well kept and are ideal for wheelchairs, pushchairs and mobility scooters. Part way round there is a hide which looks over the reservoir, today there were Swans, Canada Geese, Coots, Tufted Ducks and Grebe, none of them close enough to get decent photographs, I did however get a ice photograph of this Robin.
This Robin was ringed which you do not see very often.
The reservoir passes The Anglers Retreat and back to the car park, we walked back on to the canal towpath to NB Valerie and paid a visit to Jacqueline and Les, where we enjoyed a coffee and a couple of hours of good old nattering. It is always such a pleasure to sit and chat to them both, they are a real joy. We first met Les back in 2005 on the Caldon Canal, which now seems like a lifetime ago. We look forward to seeing them again when we head towards Uxbridge. Having taken up so much of their time, we say our “Goodbyes” and left them in peace. Back on the boat dinner was cooking nicely in the back stove, the smell was devine. Paddy and Marmite had clearly been asleep as they both looked a bit bleary eyed.
With the boat shut up against the cold breeze, I have no plans to go out again.