Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Things happen in threes

Compared to the rest of the year we have had a fairly busy time for the past five weeks or so. We have also had a few problems, nearly all solved now.

We spent a bit of time at our mooring then headed to Smethwick top lock to join some friends at a community event and do a bit of trading, it was pretty much a waste of time as far as sales were concerned, people were interested in eating and listening to the music not spending money. We then went into Birmingham for a bit of shopping before heading back to our mooring.

This was when problem one occurred, the outlet on our exhaust manifold/heat exchanger broke. Our good friends Paul and Jennie came and rescued us and towed us back to our mooring. After checking the cost of a new part we decided to see if the old unit could be welded, thankfully our neighbour is a welder and managed to repair it for us. Paul and Jennie had offered to tow us back into Birmingham so that we didn't miss the floating market there but that proved unneccesary.

While we were at our moorings Keith, Leesa and Ellie came to visit to celebrate Ellie's first birthday so we had a nice al fresco lunch with chocolate cake to follow. We missed out on joining our friends for a weekend of trading and volunteering in Walsall because of our engine problems but visited by bus on the Saturday. We also helped some of them through Ryders Green Locks, I think we are becoming the unofficial lock keepers there for our friends.

Once the repairs were done on Morgana we headed for the Birmingham floating market, Ray was worried about the reason for the problem, thought it was probably due to excessive vibration and decided it was time to replace the engine mounts, so that is repair number two, although we haven't done that yet.

We had a disappointing weekend in Birmingham, the weather was unkind and nobody had a very good weekend for sales but it is always fun when we all meet up. The highlight of my weekend was a visit from the Hobbins clan, that and actually selling one of my rag rugs!!

After our weekend in Birmingham Ray deserted me for four days to help someone move their boat from our moorings to Barby on the North Oxford canal. I had a couple of days relaxing and introducing some of my fellow boaters to the delights of  the Birmingham markets then I moved down to Dickens Heath on the Stratford canal where Ray joined me on Thursday evening.

I have been saying for sometime that our batteries were not performing very well, on Wednesday, the day I moved, they died. After about four hours of cruising when they should have been nicely charged I had enough power for ten minutes of radio! More expense, now all replaced and working well.

We are now on our way to the Black Boy to trade for the weekend, then we are going to have a few (hopefully) relaxing weeks before we head up the Shroppie and Llangollen canals for a couple more markets before returning home for the winter.

Since my last post we have traveled 42.6 miles, 49 locks, 3 lift bridges and 4 tunnels

This year we have traveled 146.3 miles, 143 locks, 1 swing bridge,3 lift bridges and 8 tunnels

In 2013 we traveled 459.1 miles, 434 locks, 7 swing bridges, 15 lift bridges and 31 tunnels

In 2012 we traveled 876.9 miles, 675 locks,  55 swing bridges, 23 lift bridges and 31 tunnels

In 2011 we traveled 461.4 miles, 444 locks, 3 swing bridges, 34 lift bridges and 15 tunnels

During 2010 we traveled 740.3 miles, 642 locks, 53 swing bridges, 4 lift bridges and 25 tunnels

Since Ray retired we have traveled 2694 miles, 2343 locks, 119 swing bridges, 79 lift bridges and 111 tunnels

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