So we finally got away. It didn't happen last year for several reasons, not least because I was launching The Skipper & Her Mate at the Scarriff Harbour Festival at the beginning of August. If we'd gone north we'd have had to come all the way back down again. But off we went upriver last weekend, through Meelick Lock (still working during the usually sacrosanct 1 - 2 pm lunch hour!) and onto Meelick Quay. Here we are in the lock:
Well packed with boats. Everyone seemed to be going north. Nice weather, warm and partly sunny.
The car was halfway to Meelick - we'd cycled back to Portumna. That afternoon we were going to cycle back for it in lovely sunshine. We stopped at Meelick Quay as it was on the right side of the river for this. Had lunch. You'll have guessed what happened next.
And then this:
It was torrential all afternoon. This bowl and saucepan both filled, were emptied, filled. These were leaks we didn't even know were there. In the galley, in the saloon, cockpit, forecabin (oh no! Joe's bed got wet).
The day didn't improve much. We cycled back for the car. It was further than we thought. The route was disputed. Back at the boat it was discovered I'd forgotten the potatoes.
But there's always tomorrow. Who can beat this:
Taken at Shannonbridge. The jetties here were full. There was a contingent down from the North including Nigel who made the splendid winter covers for Winter Solstice - Irish Spars and Rigging were the company then. Now there's just himself working away.
There was the usual difficulty at Tarmonbarry Lock where the keeper has no interest in pleasing people. Forty minutes to lock down a lock of boats, and then, oh dear, it's one o'clock. Closed for lunch, thank you very much.
We got through the first lock after lunch. I'd say it would take him a couple of hours to clear the backlog. We were heading for Richmond Harbour but had to go the long way round, turning into the Camlin River above Tarmonbarry instead of going via the lock below, the lock having a fault and its mending time being uncertain. I'm glad we did though. It was beautiful. Sitting at the front of the boat daydreaming ...
And here she is in Richmond Harbour.
Back soon. Can't wait.