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Friday 13th holds no fears for us

It wasn’t a great start to the weekend by any means. We had decided to stop taking any notice of the BBC weather forecast after it became clear that they were incapable of giving anything close to an accurate prediction. However it wasn’t the weather that caused the initial problem but a simple question of logistics. After travelling to Basingstoke during the day I returned to Hinckley where I collected Sue and all of the things that we would need for our weekend trip. We drove to Braunston village where we picked up some provisions at the local shop before making our way to the marina, as we turned off the main road we realised that we had forgotten to bring the keys to the boat so we had little choice but to return home for them, adding another fifty miles to the day’s travelling. It was half past five when we finally got to the boat but it only took us another fifteen minutes to get ourselves organised and leave the marina. It was just after six when we entered the first of the six locks at Braunston. The rain started by the time we were leaving the second lock and by the time we reached the third the rain was torrential, almost tropical given the temperature. We only passed one boat coming down the flight and we were following another so it took us somewhere around ninety minutes to reach the top of the flight. The boat in front of us tied up once it had cleared the top lock so we passed it and made our way to the tunnel mouth. The northern portal of Braunston tunnel yawned and then swallowed Phoenix III for a while before spitting us out at the other end some forty minutes later. It was still raining when we emerged back into the daylight but we carried on undaunted until we reached Norton junction where we turned left as we had done almost two years earlier. We carried on until we passed under bridge 2 where we pulled up and moored for the evening. Sue had lit the fire after we left the tunnel so the interior of the boat was cosy and warm when we stopped and ate a delicious bowl of chicken curry. We settled in our reclining chairs and promptly fell asleep and when we awoke it was nearly midnight so we quickly climbed into bed where we could resume our slumbers.