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Category: Continuous Cruising

Living on a continuous cruiser on the UK canal system under CRT rules.

Welcome to the Nasty Nexus

Welcome to the Nasty Nexus

Or Braunston as some people call it. A place where;

  • Boating neighbors ignore you when you greet them.
  • Villagers call you ‘spaz’ on the towpath as you pass.
  • Random boaters assault you.
  • Your car is vandalised when you leave it overnight.
  • Fishermen give you death stares as you approach them.

Boaters paradise… Good value eh?

Apart from writing a blog post about the place and spending my winter mooring here in 2017, I don’t think I’ve done anything TO the place.

The people vandalise, assault, steal and are generally as unpleasant as they can be without resorting to violence. Which is not always true….

Assault
Assault

Remember this guy? He decided he didn’t like me when I was eating dinner al-fresco, and he was retrieving a tyre from the other side of the canal.

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Far from madding motorway

Far from madding motorway

The faint hum that has been in the background, for more than 6 months now…. is gone.

I’m on the Northampton/Warwickshire border.

Northampton/Warwickshire border in Braunston
Northampton/Warwickshire border in Braunston

My boat’s pointing toward Oxford… You can see the border there, about 100 feet away.

It’s very quite here. Very much quieter than it’s been for a long-long time. Although Flore was kind of quite, it didn’t have the stillness of the countryside.

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Muscott

Muscott

Wind turbines
Cancer

Death windmill cancer zombies

Close to the lost village. Apparently lost during the time of the black death. As so much of the population was destroyed at this time, many small villages ceased to exist. Their residents turned into zombies. Muscottities still haunt the hills and dales near the M1. I even heard it was them that put up the windmills…. Although that could be ‘fake news’… Windmills cause cancer… We all know that…

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Dodford -> Brockhall

Dodford -> Brockhall

I used to call it ‘Muscott’, but it’s much closer to ‘Brockhall’ than the deserted village of Muscott.

One of the residents, or I assume it was one of the residents, accosted me whilst walking through the hamlet of Brockhall 2 nights ago.

Brockhall busy body

The road across from Brockhall to Long Buckby is what’s known as a ‘gated road’. It’s a rural kind of road with free roaming cattle and two gates or cattle grids at either end.

This road takes in the lost village of Muscott, skirts across a couple of hill tops, then goes through the hamlet of Brockhall.

Brockhall itself used to be home to a large manor house, Brockhall Hall, which due to lack of an heir, was sold off in 1969 and re-developed over the course of time into a set of self contained flats.

This large manor is set opposite Brockhall Manor, a large and still functioning farm operation, with a few thatched crofters cottages set in between.

Brockhall Northamptonshire
Brockhall Northamptonshire

Just prior to these cottages is the gate leading toward Buckby and the canal.

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Covid on the socially distanced cut – Dodford Meadows

Covid on the socially distanced cut – Dodford Meadows

Continuous cruising rules are back in operation, meaning I have to move. The boat, not my personage.

I’ve moved 2 stops down, skipping my usual stop in Weedon Bec.

I decided that the excess of pedestrian traffic around that area was probably best avoided at this time.

I’ve moved a little further to this spot which is closest to a village called Dodford. I call it Dodford Meadows.

I’m moored opposite Canna Mead Wharf‘s boat crane. Sometimes they lift the odd boat out here to do a bit of work on.

They have a day boat for hire nowadays, but no website.

There used to be more boats moored up here. Some of them appear to have moved off.

From 2017

I took this picture at the end of 2017. Actually, I’ve been here a few times.

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Covid on the Cut – May the 4th be with you

Covid on the Cut – May the 4th be with you

Now into my forth edition. 8 Weeks of solid lock down.

I’ve grown tired of the whisky….

The thoughts of it’s aftertaste are no longer a comfort.

Fresh brood of signets. Grand Union - Stowehill.
Fresh brood of signets. Grand Union – Stowehill.
View across Nene Valley toward Flore from the Grand Union Canal
Freshly ploughed field. Nene Valley toward Flore from the Grand Union Canal.

Increase in wildlife on the canal during lockdown

Other areas of the UK urban and city are increasing in terms of returning wildlife, the following area’s of the cut are seeing a re-surgence.

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Covid on the Cut – Grade 3

Covid on the Cut – Grade 3

Now into the third fortnight, sixth week of official lockdown figures.

Whisky

I have taken up drinking whisky. Under the circumstances, it seems like the only sensible thing to do…

Over the last 3 weeks I’ve bought the following single malt whiskies.

Cardhu Gold Reserve – £25 (Tesco)

Cardhu Single - Gold Reserve
Cardhu Single – Gold Reserve

After checking online reviews, I bought this one whilst in Tesco.
It’s a single malt, Speyside, 12 years matured.
The reviews seemed mostly positive at a quick scan whilst in the aisles…
Getting it home, I felt the packaging a bit bulky maybe even a bit tacky. Overstated may be a better word…
After a few sips, I found it a bit sweet, less smokey, complex flavors, a bit more up-front. Made it a bit more-ish, but I don’t think I’d buy it again.
Bit of a novelty perhaps. Not sure why it got all the good reviews. Glad I got it on offer. Not something I’d pay full price for.

Marks and Spencer Speyside Single Malt – £30

Marks and Spencer Speyside Single Malt

Got this one from the Independent’s top 10 Single Malt Whiskys Guide.

Initially, I was quite impressed with the strong flavor. It’s quite strong and heady and it does have that lingering smokiness and smoothness which seems to be the hallmark of most of the Speyside whiskies out there.

I’ve not finished this one yet. It is quite strong, flavor and alcohol wise, it’s not something you’d drink in a rush. So it’s still around.

Aldi – Glen Marnoch Highland – £17.98

Aldi - Glen Marnoch Highland

This one is one of three single malts sourced exclusively by Aldi.

Like many Aldi items, the quality is surprisingly good, better even than higher priced similar products.

In fact, having tasted all three single malts that Aldi currently sell in store, I would say that they are a better, more satisfying whisky.

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