I have been remonstrated with by my brother about failure to blog, but frankly, we have been doing family things, not boating. Our Loughborough mooring was as below.
On Monday we explored the delights of free bus passes as we travelled from Loughborough to Leicester on a 127, then changed to an ?X5? and went to Market Harborough. The journey took us about one and a half hours, by car it would have been about 3/4 hour. We then had to get from Harborough to Debdale to collect the car. The hour and a half trip was free, the taxi ride took under 10 minutes and cost £9. Even so the journey by car at around 40p per mile would have cost well over £12. We went to collect our new tyre and then spent a while in Harborough sorting out a new phone for Carol and having lunch.
New phone on Orange. For £35 per month 700 min to any mobile, 100 texts and 100 min to land lines. This should improve on last month's costs!
Great discovery. Weatherspoons. Carol often coughs up over £2 for a cappuccino, Weatherspoons was under £1 & passed the test. But better still, on Mondays certain bitters are only £1.45 per pint, including Pedigree!! I nearly thought I had died and gone to heaven. I can't remember when I last paid so little for this great beer. We also had our main meal there and it cost around £6 for the two of us. The only worrying thing was seeing people in there at around 10.30 drinking pints in rounds, and even with quite elderly ladies doing so at that time. I never realised this went on.
On Tuesday we eventually left Loughborough and went to Zouch, a small hamlet right by the cut, where we stopped the night, it took us barely 2 hours cruising from Loughborough and just 2 locks. Tried out the Rose & Crown for Cappuccino coffee & beer. The meals here used to be really good value, they don't seem that way now, and anyway our tastes have changed. Beer was OK & Carol said so was the coffee, and they were friendly people in there.
The next morning we went through Zouch lock, cruised for about 2 miles towards Kegworth then turned and passed through Loughborough to a lovely secluded mooring. Not much cruising, but an enjoyable day. I enclose a photo.
Thursday morning we headed off towards Mountsorrel, emptying the loo and filling with water. We were to entertain friends to lunch and a cruise. The weather for the previous few days was pretty cold, so Carol cooked her lovely Moussaka, lovely food on a cool day but of course it was lovely and warm. Never mind, we all enjoyed it and then set off to Loughborough and back. Most enjoyable.
Friday 24th we left Lily at about 10. We had another flat tyre the evening before and we used our very inexpensive breakdown service (£34 for the 2 of us, 2 cars per year!!) to help. I tried all my sockets but couldn't shift the wheel nuts, the breakdown chap used a bar at least a metre long and had to give it some real stick to free the nuts. Eventually we were off to see our daughter & family for Emily's 5th birthday party over the weekend, and we brought her back with us on Monday. She stayed with us until Thursday evening when Clare took her home.
Great things during her visit. We visited Leicester Museum to see what we know as "Dippy" the dinosaur, which she loved. We also looked at the new Attenborough collection of Picasso pottery. Very interesting, we are lucky Sir Richard has given this to the Museum. We also pulled in the Newark Houses Museum to let Emily see the Daniel Lambert exhibits. On Thursday we all went to Stonehurst Farm Park in Mountsorrel. This is about 1/2 a mile from Mountsorrel Lock and the kids aged 2, 5 and 13 all had a great time. We were there playing on things and cuddling small animals for over 4 hours and had to drag the kids away!
Greg Duffin who created this has also been an old car nut for around 45 years, he actually helped me out when I needed track rod ends for my Austin Seven when it failed its MOT. He now has a wonderful eclectic collection of all sorts of motoring bits, I guess around 25 cars from the early 20s onwards and a great array of old motorbikes. All the exhibits are different, some wonderfully restored, others totally unrestored, along with everything else I used to see when I visited small garages around the area in the 1960's. There are many Austins including a rather nice Ulster, a large Rolls Royce, an aged Crossley bus, and a lovely sports Vauxhall, I guess a 30/98, but I'm very rusty on my old cars. Give the place a visit, it has a lovely cafe/restaurant and a very good farm shop.
So Friday 31st, we are on our own again, but are going out with friends that evening so Carol wants a hair do. We were going to cruise to Loughborough, but decided to use the car instead and we had a thrilling time doing the launderette too! Also we found a very large "Outdors" shop which we shall delve into more in the future. The meal out at an Italian restaurant (Bobolis) in Kibworth was expensive and was not very good. All four of us looked at the menu and were not sure what we would chose to eat, not spoilt for choice, but struggling to find something that tickled our fancy. We will not go again, but rest assured, it is a fairly long walk from the canal so boaters are not likely to find it.
Saturday, September 1st, we set off again from friend Beryl's moorings and did the usual at the Barrow services stop. We ran out of one of the gas bottles on Thursday so need to replace it. We have never before had the cooker go out on us, having sensed it beforehand, not so then! I also dipped the fuel tank and we seem to have used 100 litres since 13th August running the engine for 62 hours. We moored up near to the Chainbridge in Loughborough and wandered off to shop. I walked to see the Old Rectory Museum near the Parish Church. It is only open on Saturdays from 10 to 4, not big, but I found it interesting. If you are visiting Loughborough, try to fit in a visit to Taylor's Bell Foundry, very interesting, and try to hear the Carillon play. The Great Central Railway is a lovely way to spend a day. When we did it with our eldest 2 grandchildren, who were I guess about 10 and 7, we were going to and fro for most of a day, and thoroughly enjoyed our all day breakfast on the train.
Current mooring location, courtesy of Google Earth is:-
52 degrees 46' 37.82N 1 degree 12' 40.51 W
Carol cooked a lovely new recipe from Friday's Times newspaper, a sort of Spanish omelette with choritso sausage and coriander. Well worth a try if you like the ingredients. Since then I've been bashing away at this.
I took these photos of our Mountsorrel moorings this morning.
The stone building is the old butter market.