Ashby Canal (Burton Hastings) to Stoke Golding : 6 miles, 0 locks
To date : 1254 miles, 872 locks
We woke to cloudy skies this morning. Just as we were about to cast off nb Autmun Myst and nb Dolce Far Niente came around the bend so we waited for them to pass and set off behind them. We continued in the convoy of three until we reached Trinity Marina where we were catching up with Angie and Dave on nb Lady Esther.
Lady Esther has had a new paint job since we saw her last in Braunston so she's all shiny and perfect looking! We enjoyed coffee and a good natter. Before coming back so Dave and Angie could have a look at Parisien Star. She left me with a bag of her mooring pin covers and I left her with a bag of a Sainsbury bags.
We had a quick lunch and headed on our way again. A lot of the way we had huge power lines running alongside. We passed a very pretty offside mooring with lovely garden, and a boat with a stupid owner who thought it acceptable to tie his mooring line right across the towpath. It's been interesting rural cruising.
When we reached bridge 26 we spied the end mooring free, just after the entrance to the Ashby Canal Centre. It's a pretty spot with the bridge over the marina entrance right behind and the bridge in view. We settled in and headed out for a walk.
The village of Stoke Golding is nearby so we walked the towpath to the next bridge and then through a farmers field into the village. The sun was out and it was just perfect for a good walk. We found the village church whose spire we can see from the boat. As we walked through the gate to look closer a lady came out from a house down a driveway and said to go into the courtyard of cottages and take the church key that hangs by the door of one of the cottages. We went and found the enormous iron key and let ourselves into the beautiful church. The floor was an amazing patchwork of tiles and headstones. There was a box of local made preserves so we bought a jar of plum jam. We returned the key to its place after we had a good look around and off we went again.
Walking back around to another canal bridge we noticed a sign for a farm shop so went to check it out. We had a chat with the lady there. It was a nice little farm shop. We had been gone two hours by the time we returned to the boat to play cards.
Today was one of those days that we came here for. We cruised, we chatted with lovely folk, saw a nice boat, walked in a pretty village, looked in a farm shop. As I took a photo of a front door that took my fancy it suddenly struck me that I'm really going to miss England and we will definitely miss this way of life.