Think we have used that heading before but after today it deserves to be used twice. The predicted temperature was 30c but it got up to 32c and once again just sapped the energy out of us. We were fortunate as part of the cruise today from Thrupp to Lower Heyford was under a gorgeous canopy of trees.
Leaving Thrupp this morning, we cruised passed the only dwellings in the hamlet and for such a small place it is extremely popular with canal boaters.
We pulled into Thrupp services where the boat ablutions were done and we would have to rate them 10/10. You can tell when someone has a lot of pride in their place by the way it is cared for. There was a lovely garden around the buildings and all the facilities were very clean.
Originally when we got onto the Oxford Canal, the surrounding countryside was very flat and not overly exciting but in just a day of cruising it has changed to gently rolling hills. The farmers are out cutting all the hay and leaving it out to dry which has encouraged just the odd fly and increased the pollen count.
We have seen a significant increase in traffic on the canals and at one particularly busy point we had a lock jam. There were at least three boats in front of us and by the time we got into the lock, there were five behind us. Oxford is normally a busy canal but this weekend is a bank holiday long weekend.
We came to the first of the two diamond shaped locks on the Oxford. No one can explain to us why it is this shape. We have seen one like this before on another canal and it is no different to any other lock operation. They do tend to be shallow locks though.
What was meant to be a day of four hours of cruising turned into nearly six hours due to the increased traffic. This created an additional two hours in the sun which was exhausting for us all. We had Toque covered in a wet blanket and if we had been out in it much longer we would have given her a cool bath.
We pulled into the lovely little village of Lower Heyford and managed to drag ourselves around for a bit of a look.
We were more than a little fortunate with our mooring as it was under some large trees that have provided us with shade. The trade off will be all the tree dropsies on the roof in the morning.
We pulled in at 4.00pm and immediately sat down and listened to the last half hour of cricket as it was nail biting stuff which is something you don’t often hear about in reference to cricket. The pommes are over the moon as to what Ben Stokes (born a Kiwi) did and was truly phenomenal. No doubt, that last ball will be played over and over and over and over…….add infinitive for the next week. So the Ashes are still undecided but the Brits have to win the last two games to take the Ashes back to Lords.
We have realized that we have been remiss in our videos about the boat. This one is the boudoir arrangements which are perfectly satisfactory.