This Month's Totals and Average
11.89 miles 0 locks 5.78 hrs 2.06 lmph

  December 2015

29th-31st December ~ Fazeley Mill Marina

Beautiful sunny day all day Tuesday. Generally pottered about in the morning, then took the bike to Alrewas to see what the river-section was like (in the green, and local intel suggests it goes down fast, so the run to Burton for maintenance should go fairly easily). Wind started to increase after dinner, becoming very wild overnight as storm "Frank" made itself felt. Stayed tucked up during Wednesday as the storm passed through - very windy, with the heavy rain arriving during the afternoon. The gales and heavy rain abated overnight, although the wind was still strong on Thursday morning. A mostly sunny day rounded off the year. Should have been setting off today to get the maintenance work done at Burton, but we had been informed of a death in the family over the Christmas period, the funeral next week, so hanging back to attempt a run north if the weather OK for the bike. Will contact the dock on Monday when they re-open after the festive break.

Monday 28th December ~ Afternoon trip to Kingsbury and back

Final preparation in the morning for Joshua's mini-adventure. Josh and mum Vicki arrived at the marina at 12:30 and, once all aboard, we had a picnic lunch before "Paws" slipped her mooring and headed out southwards. Although fine for the whole day, it was cloudy and chilly. We took an hour to get as far as Kingsbury water-park and winded. Josh took the tiller for the return run - a born steerer, requiring very little by way of help even though it was only his first time. Arrived back at the marina just as light was starting to fade. Moored up again and Josh and Vicki headed home, Josh with a big smile on his face! Dinner, then a quiet evening with the tele.

5.15 miles 0 locks 2.18 hrs 2.37 lmph

24th-27th December ~ Fazeley Mill Marina

A very wet and windy night continued into Christmas Eve until lunchtime, when the sun came out. Went to the 'Christingle' service at St Editha's at teatime, then to the midnight service. Christmas Day was dull, drizzly, and colder than of late. Went to the communion service in the morning then joined Alan and Joan at Brian and Christine's during the afternoon for dinner. Fantastic day; very many thanks to everyone for making me so welcome at their family day. Boxing Day remained wet most of the day. Did a bit of catching up, but generally had a lazy day. A better day on Sunday, drier until late afternoon. Went for a walk for exercise, and collected my specs which I had left at Brian & Christine's on Christmas Day. Made arrangements for a short trip out for Joshua, their grandson.

Wednesday 23rd December ~ Fazeley Mill Marina

Day started dry and bright. Moved across to the services berth for coal, then took "Paws" down to the Junction for more kindling from the sawmill. Joined the choir of St Editha's Church in carol-singing at the Macgregor Tithe residential home. Got the final food shopping in for the Christmas period before chilling out as the weather turned wet and windy late afternoon.

0.83 miles 0 locks 0.64 hrs 1.29 lmph

21st-22nd December ~ Fazeley Mill Marina

Monday started a bright sunny day, but deteriorated to wet, windy and cold by lunchtime. Quick dive out to collect mail then tucked up inside. Rain and cloud cleared by mid-afternoon, but it remained windy. Went to the Snowdome in the evening to join a group from local churches for more carol-singing. Turned out to be a "Sing Christmas" event - "9 Lessons & Carols" in a modern idiom, complete with band. Wind increased overnight, and the rain returned Tuesday afternoon.

16th-20th December ~ Fazeley Mill Marina

Quiet night weatherwise, with Wednesday dawning warm and bright with long sunny intervals. Went for my exercise walk round the Glascote/Ventura/Bonehill circle. Unseasonably warm November/December so far, with comments on the television forecasts that overnight temperatures have actually been warmer over the past week than some nights during July! Thursday and Friday were mostly dull, with a mixture of intermittent showers and occasional brighter periods. Joined in with carol-singing with a group from local churches at ASDA on Friday evening. Saturday had more rain but it eased in the evening in time for the Marina Christmas Party at "The Three Tuns". For a 'change of view' on Sunday, went to the morning service and evening "9 Lessons & Carols" at St Editha's Church  in Tamworth (ended up being 'coerced' into joining the choir for the morning service; an interesting experience coming from a Church of Scotland background!). Beautiful sunny day all day, except for a heavy shower mid-afternoon.

10th-15th December ~ Fazeley Mill Marina

Wind back by bedtime, and rain returned by breakfast Thursday. Spent most of the day doing business/financial paperwork. Friday was a better day, with the wind dropped again and mostly sunny. Normal choir rehearsal in the afternoon, plus shopping. The rain and wind returned again overnight, and Saturday remained that way all day. Stayed tucked up inside; a good excuse to do some baking (although the recipe didn't quite come out as hoped). Sunday started with drizzle, which lasted until the middle of the afternoon. Was singing at the second carol concert staged by the U3A  choir at the Memorial Hall in Polesworth. Got a little damp getting there, but had a dry run back. Went to the traditional "9 Lessons & Carols" evening service at St Paul's. Rain cleared completely by Monday morning so got the shopping, mail collection and other jobs done. Rain returned by dinner time, and continued overnight. Tuesday was a damp day, turning more to drizzle by mid-afternoon. Sang at the last carol concert for this year by the U3A  choir at Tamworth library.

9th December ~ Kingsbury to Fazeley (short break)

Lovely sunrise; one could be forgiven for thinking it was late Spring (apart from the temperature, and the time of day). Cooler this morning, having reached as low as 5 degrees over night. With a forecast for rain tomorrow, decided to return to base today. Pottered till mid-morning, then set off back towards the marina (interestingly, found Drayton Swing Bridge closed?). Back just in time for lunch, then routine chores in the afternoon.

2.59 miles 0 locks 1.40 hrs 1.86 lmph

8th December ~ Kingsbury (short break)

Beautiful quiet night, no howling wind or battering rain. Cloudy start cleared quickly to lovely sunny day, with good forecast for tomorrow. Decided to stay put for the day in the lovely peaceful surroundings. Couple of light showers but otherwise a very nice day.

7th December ~ Fazeley to Kingsbury (short break)

A much better night saw a sunny start to the morning with little wind. Still very warm for the time of year. Needed more kindling so, after routine chores and lunch, took "Paws" round to Fazeley Junction to the saw mill. Still a nice afternoon so decided to stay out for the night, moving round to Kingsbury at the bottom of the Curdworth flight. Lovely sunset.

3.32 miles 0 locks 1.56 hrs 2.12 lmph

1st-6th December ~ Fazeley Mill Marina

Beautiful day to start December - mostly sunny, only a few clouds, and relatively warm (certainly warm for the time of year). Fitted the new batteries without apparent mishap, and cleared a couple of other outstanding jobs while the weather was good.

Another lovely day Wednesday. Concert by the U3A  choir at the monthly U3A meeting - work we had been practising during the year along with guitar/vocal from Brian, and communal singing of carols. Great way to start the Festive Season.

Thursday started fair, but turned to rain. Managed to get the shopping done before it set in.

After a very wet and windy evening and night, Friday dawned a beautiful day, but once again turned cloudy by later afternoon and the wind had started to rise. Another walk round the towpaths via Glascote, Tamworth centre, Ventura and Bonehill (it's almost exactly 5 miles, so good exercise).

Another wild night - wind howling and rain battering down (the fronts from storm "Desmond"). Still windy in the morning, but decided to risk heading for the day-out with the BCF . Met at "The Grange" Residential Home, Sandiacre, for a round of carol singing for the residents, then on to "The Black Boy", Heage, for our Christmas Dinner. Great day out despite the weather.

Yet another foul night into Sunday, although bringing in an improved dawn. Cloud built again after lunch with drizzle setting in by late afternoon.

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