The weather was still amazing, clear skies and no wind enabled me to neatly reverse onto the fuel pontoon and with a full tank we said goodbye to Kings Marina and turned up stream and retraced our steps back to Gunthorpe. I deployed my VHF radio when I realised that the lock keepers are in radio contact on channel 74. When the Gunthorpe keeper enquired where I was headed, I responded by saying “the pontoon”, I then heard him radio down to a boat already on the pontoon, enquiring if there was a suitable space left, on receiving a positive response he asked that a look out for SKYY be kept and sure enough, as we approached the pontoon somebody waved and indicated that there was room on the inside and then helped up tie up, That’s what I call service.
That evening Brian and Ann collected us and we drove into Nottingham to watch Tinker Tailor Solder Spy, film at the Broadway cinema, we enjoyed it, but I did overhear one young lady comment on the way out “Could have done with a good car chase” I think not.
Another lovely morning on Saturday prompted me to take a photo of the elegant Gunthorpe Bridge and a shot of the smart cruisers that we shared the pontoon with, after which I also got the starboard side of the boat washed and polished. Later that morning Jacquie’s goddaughter Stephanie and her husband John visited us, they live nearby, but most importantly we had for the first time a baby on board, their daughter, Florence, a five month old cutie and she took to Duggie and life on board very calmly.
Later that day Steve and Caroline arrived from Essex and as the air was still warm late into the evening we had drinks on the rear deck. On Sunday we left Gunthorpe and stopped for the day just after Holme Lock. This is right beside the National Water Sports Centre and we enjoyed watching the canoeist navigate the slalom course and rafts of eight to ten people negotiate the white water rapids, judging by the amount of noise that they were making they were clearly enjoying themselves. Steve and I sat on the deck with our beers, barbequing a lamb joint and making the most of these last days of Indian summer.
The sun still shone on Monday, but the wind was now very strong, indicating that a change was about to take place. We travelled right through Nottingham only pausing for Castle Lock and back on the river I needed more throttle to stem the current and the wind making our final turn into the entrance of the Erewash Canal slightly challenging. Once through Trent Lock all was peace and tranquillity as we moored up. We were concerned that Duggie might think that the thick green carpet of duckweed that covered the water was grass, but he must have more sense than we credit him for, he made no attempt to walk on water.
We were just in time for the very good value, day time menu, at the newly opened Trent Lock pub; this was formerly the Navigation Inn, but now a smart and friendly gastro pub. A cab was booked and in the gathering gloom we said our farewells to Steve and Caroline as they began their homeward journey.