Monday, 1 June 2009

Highlights of the BCN Challenge 2009

  • finishing
  • bow-hauling a 70' boat from Horsley Jn to Chillington at 7am
  • bow-hauling a 70' boat slightly more slowly from Oldbury Bottom Lock to the Aqueduct in the heat of the sun
  • Robert deciding to swim the Old Main line instead of bow-hauling
  • getting to the end of the Ridgeacre, after the Challenge
  • no seriously. The very end. TNC-style with the stern inserted into the culvert
  • being asked how much the boat cost by a teenager and watching his disappointment when we said seven quid
  • the dogging couple at Anglesey Basin; obviously in search of privacy they chose to "dog" in full sight of the canal, a major A road and the M6 Toll, so proving that there is indeed a shallow end of the human gene pool
  • being rammed sideways by NB Kerchez at Catshill
  • the tent on fire at Wednesbury and passers-by just ignoring it; clearly this is nothing unusual hereabouts
  • a man telling his kid "No, it's not a narrow boat. It's a barge"
  • learning how to splice a rope
  • debating whether an object recovered was a fender or a dildo (jury still out, but now on Tawny Owl anyway)
  • the mince and potatos
  • the beauty of the Rushall, Curley Wyrley, most of the Old Main Line, the upper part of the Titford, most of the Walsall
  • the grammar and spelling of the graffitti artists ("We will not be stoped! Yes you will!"; "WV2 Crew. No-one will wath us"; "Lena is a slarg")
  • the semi-naked anglers rising like prairie dogs from the reeds as we approached
  • the bloke who asked us if we had seen "a fat bald bloke fishing"; errrr...all of them?
  • Richard asks "what can go wrong down the Ridgeacre?" and the three of us who don't own the boat say nothing
  • seeing Que Sera Sera being steered by Elvis and towed by Shergar
  • sunset over Goscote
  • Phil Lynott lookalike bellowing orders around the Walsall basin as boats arrived
  • everything actually: great crewmates, great boat, great canals, great event. If you weren't there, you missed a huuuuuuge event!!

Originally posted on the Canal World Forum!

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