Friday 18 July 2014

Big Trip home Day 7 - Amyjo's day off.

Having found we are only 100 yards from a nice new glittering Tesco super store we decided a late start was in order so we could do a big shop this morning.

Unusually for me I did not surface until 7:30am so tea for me and coffee for Chris got served at the same time.  We got under way at 11 am after my arms recovered from carrying the shopping bags and was followed by a tupperware cruiser who made it clear he was in a hurry so we let him pass.  We later found out he was cruising with another tupperware cruiser and we were between them and he wanted to catch the other boat up.

Does this qualify as an offline mooring?  There s a boat in there somewhere!
One private mooring owner's answer to boats speeding past,
 a speed camera.
AmyJo has performed faultlessly up to now but she is not as spick and span as we like her to be.  In fact where we had been mooring under trees or in woods the roof was beginning to look like the forest floor.  When, in the galley, Chris thought she saw a rabbit hop over the Houdini hatch enough was enough and some cleaning thorough was required.  No she had not been drinking, at last not that I know of anyway.

 I checked the Diesel level before we left and with just over half a tank we decided to call in to Great Haywood Marina for a pump out and top up.  Neither were desperate but as the marina was close by we thought why not.  Besides we have been pressing on without let up for Severn days now and are a day ahead of planned schedule.  Time to give AmyJo a much needed day of rest though not before moving to Great Haywood a short distance further on.  Today showed that rest was needed for us and AmyJo.  

The reason was at 900 rpm AmyJo had developed a rather annoying rattle in the engine bay since yesterday.  Once moored in the marina we call Beta and with their help investigation revealed a slightly slack alternator belt, which, after tightening, seems to have cured the noise.  We'll have to see if this has cured it when under way later.   I also mentioned to Beta about our coolant loss which, by the way, is still occurring but very slowly.  Again, with their help, we identified the header tank filler cap is not sealing correctly so not holding pressure properly.  The vent pipe is wet indicating some coolant is venting due to pressure release and hence the water in the engine bay after I had dried it out before we left Crick.  Beta offered to send me a new cap and filler neck to see if that cures it but for now a top up of water and antifreeze occasionally will get us home.

As the temperature outside this afternoon was so high we decided to cool off by washing the grime and dust off AmyJo.  Needless to say nether of us were too careful where the hose was aimed, but lets just say we were much cooler when we finished but in need of a complete change of clothes.

After tea when the temperature started to drop we got out the polish and now AmyJo is her nice shiny self again.  Unfortunately its now getting dark so if it has not rained over night photos will have to wait until morning.  Also the tinterweb signal is not good here either hence the lack of photos.

So tomorrow, predicted thunder storms permitting, we have a decision to make.  Do we stay to plan and head down the Staffs and Worcester to Autherley, then up the Shroppie or, carry on up the Trent & Mersey and cut across the Middlewich arm?  If the storms arrive though we ain't going nowhere!  For now we are basking in the marina's amenities and electric hook up.

Today's mooring in Great Haywood Marina for
a much needed clean, polish and R and R for the three of us.

Our route today all be it a short one
Total distance:5.69 miles Elapsed time:2h54m6s Locks:2 Bridges:13 
Average speed:1.96 mph (2.65 lock/mph) 

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