Broad Ambition - The River Blogs - Part 6
In episode six after having dropped my dad off at Horning for him to visit the shops and collected him we are Wroxham Bound and take opportunity to pop into Wroxham Broad to bring down the the mast and windscreen - something that is usually simple seemed this time to take far longer.
We left and a short while later were passing Barnes Brinkcraft, I handed the reins of the Blog to my Dad and despite having taken Broad Ambition under Wroxham Bridge before, what with the tension from earlier on with our father and son grumbles I was now rather nervous – silence on the boat – I took my time to line up only to have to steer towards the Hotel Wroxham as a day boat came through towards us. Back on course, horn sounded I had a moment where I thought the spot light would be lost, but all was well with 6ft 7” showing at the bridge we were soon through and time to stern more at the public moorings. My dad then could depart for more shopping this time in Roys.
An hour later he was not onboard and I rang him to see how long he may be – his phone duly rang in his cabin. Still more time passed and I was very much aware that as we approached 4:00pm the popular moorings would be taken (it was unusually busy everywhere) so should we stay where we were (but my Dad would likely complain of being moored stern on between other boats) or perhaps continue to Coltishall?
Just as I pondered these things my Dad returned with several Roys bags – more soup had been got, bread rolls and some crisps too. He too had been thinking on where to go and it was Horning. Horning!, Dad you saw how busy it was when we came through this morning there is simply no way we will get moored there for a pub meal now. We need another plan – and so with the likelihood of moorings being full at Ludham Bridge (too far for walking to the Dog Inn) it was between the Lion at Thurne Dyke or the Bridge Inn at Acle.
As we came under Wroxham Bridge (harder from the Coltishall side) we were in the chaos of a returning picnic boat waiting to moor at Faircraft Loynes just as a smaller day boat cut round it’s port side – another day boat further up, a centre cockpit Alpha just turning on to the main river from Faircraft’s yard and then Dazling Light from Herbert Woods continues to just ‘pull out’ into the river – back on the horn and he gives way, only then for the chap at the day boat quay to shout “It’s too loud - bloody hell!”
We got back to Wroxham Broad where we spent even more time with the canopy trying to get this up finally done we could proceed once again. Through Horning (full) past Cockshoot where we saw Eric on Brinks Rhapsody clearly unhappy, a lot of traffic about and passing St. Benet’s and once again were all full. I decided that if we went to the Lion and the moorings were full where would we go then – also I would have to cook Chicken Chasseur which frankly I would prefer some nice pub grub and an easier evening not in the galley. The Bridge Inn was decided and we turned for Acle at the confluence of the Bure and Thurne.
By the time we arrived it was as predicted getting towards dusk, all moorings taken – even in Horizon Craft - but then I spied Morning Swan who was out with his family and friends also having hired Antigua from Richardson’s – the radio burst into life it was Paul – only I could not seem to transmit back, so on the phone it was. “Can we come alongside Antigua” sure Paul said and so we turned to come into moor against the slowly ebbing current.
We ended up coming in to moor alongside Morning Swan and once safely moored and a quick chat it was time to put the heating on for the temperature had rapidly dropped and the dew was really beginning to form. Later we went over the Bridge Inn, there was a free table in the bar but my Dad felt this was ‘too exposed’ so Phil kindly put us in the restaurant after a short wait – I had a Burger (lovely) my dad Cod and chips (moaned that the sauces cam in a pot not squeezy bottle) and his fish could have been better. It looked very nice from where I was, but of course this was fast becoming a trip of shopping and grumbles for him.