Misty Morning at Potter’s Brook
We went to Galgate, Carol and me, for the guaranteed bank holiday crowds that never happened. (Everyone was down the beach posing for the BBC News, it would appear.)
The weather happened though. The sun came out and buckled the cobbles beneath the bridges. Hairy torsos suddenly became the norm for passing boaters, shirts tied proudly to masts with purulent bodies on display wearing nothing but flip flops and shorts. (There ought to be a law against it.)
The men were even worse.
Galgate looks a bit like a Hornby Railway set constructed by an enthusiast with not enough time on his hands. (I’m not saying ‘his-stroke-her hands’. People who build model railways are always ‘his’.)
Three parallel worlds operate cheek-by-jowl here; the canal, the A6 and the railway line, the latter of which criss-crosses the middle of which, via an enormous skewed bridge that dominates the village. The place is full of stone-built terraced cottages that deserve to have brass band music playing over the top of them.
We bought some chips and gravy with the day’s takings from a flustered gent who seemed to only have one joke stuck on repeat – “Are you taking you grand-daughter out for a treat, sir?”
Just before Galgate the canal branches off to Glasson under a bridge and through a lock.
It’s a bridge with a lock in front of it.
We went to have a look, as you’ve probably gathered from the photograph. I can’t really think of much else to add to that.
Later we found ourselves (and the Mouse Boat) wedged in the winding hole behind a small group of bungalows. In the end we had to use the boat hook on somebody’s garden gnome to work ourselves free. Then we headed back to Potter’s Brook.
Carol had a go at steering and didn’t sink the boat, which I thought was rather impressive.
Mouse work at Potter’s Brook.
Everybody seems to have broken down this weekend. I’ve heard of props snarled up on mooring ropes, engines leaking diesel, rudders snapping on underwater dangers and shooting through the air like deadly Frisbees.
For once the Mouse Boat didn’t break down. We just sizzled for several days in the exhausting heat, until we ran out of decent coffee and Carol made her excuses and left.
The Mouse Boat is now back in Forton and, for the next few days at least, I’m not.
I remember Forton well.