Tuesday 23 April 2024

Copper Mill lock to Cowley Lock. Grand Union Canal.

 We had a couple of nights moored just below Copper Mill lock, followed by two more just above Denham Deep lock. While we were there Dave added a big relay between the leisure and starter batteries, triggered by the alternator wire. Previously we had a manual link switch; a relay takes one step out of the starting sequence, and removes the unreliable human element from connecting the batteries while we’re moving. It’s going to be a while before Dave stops thinking he’s forgotten something, but it will mean we always get to wherever we’re going with full batteries.

Between the showers we gave our little herb troughs a fresh coat of paint, and went for a welly walk round Denham Country park. Unfortunately, Ann-Marie’s wellies weren’t quite tall enough for some of the flooded paths and she came home with wet socks.

Dave had a run down to Uxbridge and recced the visitor moorings because we needed somewhere we’d be happy to leave the boat for a fortnight while we went away. When he got there he found the entire length of VMs deserted, which looked too good to be true and, under closer inspection turned out to be exactly that. 
Upcoming towpath improvements had closed not only the VMs, but also the permanent moorings as well. All the permit holders had been temporarily re-located to the unrestricted section further down, so when we brought Legend down we had to go all the way through Uxbridge and almost to Cowley lock before we found a suitable spot.

Despite not being what we’d planned, it turned out to be a winner; we could get the car close enough for trans-shipping holiday bags and it was clear enough for decent solar while we were away.

 Early on Saturday morning we trundled our luggage to the car, leaving Legend locked and securely tied to the rail track bank. (This part of the GU has a long sections where the bank is made of vertical concrete slabs with lengths of old railway line bolted to them. Although most people just bang a pin in, with a bit of jiggery-pokery you can usually find somewhere with a gap behind the track that you can get some blue rope through, making a much more secure anchorage.)

From there we drove through storm Kathleen to Anne & Andy’s in Bristol, stopping in Slough for Upton Park parkrun, where we got soggy socks from running through their newly acquired and unexpected water feature.

Despite our boat being moored under the Heathrow flight-path, we chose to drive all the way down the M4 to Bristol to catch a plane to Türkiye. As usual it was about money; Easyjet from Bristol was half the price of flying from Heathrow, and we could leave our car at Anne & Andy’s instead of paying for airport parking. (We hate having to pay for parking.) And we hadn’t seen Anne & Andy for ages so it was good to be able to go a couple of days early and spend some time with them. After lunch Anne drove us over to see Ben. He and Megan have a lovely flat in Bristol, at the moment they’re busy transforming the garden and doing a terrific job. The next day we all went into the city for a Mystery Trail, looking for clues to solve the puzzle. Really good fun, then into the Cozy Club for lunch.

Our flight was booked for the following afternoon, so we spent the morning doing some last minute shopping, then after lunch had a tour of Keynsham charity shops. (2 Denby plates. Tick!).

At 2:30 on Monday afternoon we were outside A&A’s at the bus stop waiting for the A4 to Bristol Airport. By 2:50 several other buses had gone past, but no A4, so we phoned Anne who kindly jumped in her car and gave us a lift instead. Well at least we tried.


Post Card From Türkiye.


Monday. Smooth flight to Dalaman, arrived about midnight. Taxi driver holding a board with our names on. Good roads and nice car through Marmaris and Içmeler in the dark, then up and down hairpin bends over the mountain and arrived at Physkos in Turunç 2AM local time. Bob still up, quick coffee and chat before bed.

Tuesday morning. Hello hugs, quick tour and swim in the pool. Oba’s for pm coffee and haggled for a Raybans, Oba’s again for dinner.

Wednesday. Up before seven for walk with Bob to Amos amphitheatre. Hot walk back. Bob made  dinner then we had failed DVD night. Barbie didn’t work!

Thursday. Dave out early for a run along the seafront, then day on Musti’s boat. Three different bays  paddleboarding, snorkelling and swimming plus barbecue lunch, cocktails, magnums and lemon drizzle cake. Came 3rd in the quiz in the evening.

Friday. Up early for walk to Kumlubük beach, then into Turunç to book activity for Saturday. 

Saturday. Picked up at the gate for Jeep Safari Day. Into Marmaris to join 7 more Jeeps then up into the hills for huge off-road water pistol fight before stop at Jesus Beach then nice lunch in the hills and visit to waterfalls with icecreams. Off road logging tracks back over the peninsular to Turunç. 
Evening Turkish night. Dinner, dancing, wine. Great day & night!

Sunday. Early start for walk up the mountain towards Içmeler. Managed to get to the pass before turning back. Played Petanque and crazy golf in the afternoon. Hot day, so watched a film with air-con on. Dinner at Pasha.

Monday. Packed our stuff then out to Tea Garden for coffee and back to Oba’s for lovely Turkish Breakfast. B,M&A left at noon for the airport, we went for 2pm water taxi to Marmaris for final 2 days. Short walk from taxi to lovely AirB&B in old town. Wandered round the huge Bazar then back for beer on the balcony.

Tuesday. Walked round the castle & Museum then down to the harbour, followed by Donner kebab for lunch. Walked along the beach but very dirty, so back home for G&T.

Wednesday. Early run round town and along seafront, then packed our stuff and walked round town for a bit. Bought new earrings and sat on the balcony with a beer before going to Spoon Restaurant for slap up dinner. Collected our bags then were met by taxi at 7:30 for trip to the airport. Nice to see the journey in daylight. Flight was a bit lumpy to start with, but then OK. Landed at 2.00am. Uber to A&A’s. Cold and tired into bed @3:30am UK time.

It'll take a few days to get used to being back home. It felt like a dream when we arrived in Turkiye and it still feels that way now.
See you soon, Lots of love D&AM xxx

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