As I have been suffering with partial deafness in one ear and hearing funny drumming noises which has lasted over two weeks I decide to see a Doctor who confirms I have an infection saying my ear drum has closed so prescribes me steroids and penicillin – quite relieved really because after consulting Google I was beginning to think I had a brain tumour….
So on Tuesday 18 April with pills in hand we set off on our travels again and manage to get to the first lock La Planque before the locks shut for lunch. We um and arh about whether we can get under the bridge with the sun canopy up but decide as we came under it last year travelling the other way we should be fine……….Nope we are not!!! so after clattering the bridge with the port side of the canopy Charles hastily reverses out and we take down the whole contraption and find three bent poles. I’m beginning to think this sun canopy is doomed and we should have just bought a large umbrella…..
Fortunately that appears to be the end of our problems and we enjoy a lovely cruise to Ocean Lock No 17 for one night and then onto Gardouch. Here we cycle the few kilometers to a large supermarket to stock up properly. We are surprised to hear my name called whilst wandering around the aisles and it took a while to recognise Aaron and Kaylene who we had briefly met the year before at Ocean Lock. They were then just beginning a long visit to France and started chatting to us as we were in the lock and we we had talked about meeting up for drinks but never got around to it so it was arranged for them to join us in the morning for a short cruise and lunch on Bluegum.On Thursday the 20th Aaron and Kaylene join us to Negra where we stop for lunch. I’m feeling a wee bit rude as I’m trying to get a place on a new half marathon in London and the website is playing up but eventually I get my place albeit a charity place so I will have to raise more money. That done it great getting to know these two a bit more and enjoy a lunch before they walk back to their car and we carry on to moor for the night at the lock in Castanet-Tolosan. There is a lovely restaurant by the lock which we went to last year but decide to give it a miss this time around.
In the morning after descending the lock I jump off and enjoy a 7 mile run to Toulouse and meet Charles there to moor up in the Port St Sauveur where we will stay for the week. Sue and Paul from Lady Sue are still there from winter so they join us in the evening for a few drinks. The main purpose is to get the canvas repaired so are pleased when Gael arrives on Friday night and takes it away. On Saturday we need to ring her again as we find the dodger (wind break that goes around the stern rail) is three centimetres short on each side. We love Toulouse so we enjoy some cycling and running plus re-acquainting ourselves with the town. We venture into the city on the French polling day to see a very prominent armed police presence around the Hotel de Ville where voting is takng place.
It’s warm and sunny so we head for our favourite bar by the river for a glass or two of chilled rosé.
Our canopy and dodger are returned suitably fixed so we need to find a good day and some space on a quay to get the frame up again as we have to fit the final sections of the sides before we return to the UK in May.