Fairy tales

Still moored at Sutton on the Gurnett Aqueduct

            “There it is!” Boatwif had searched fruitlessly yesterday for the commemorative plaque – and there it was, James Brindley, famous canal engineer, was once an apprentice just down the road, here in Sutton, near Macclesfield.  There is a statue of him at Etruria, at the junction of the Caldon and the Trent & Mersey Canals in Stoke-on-Trent and another one at Coventry Canal Basin. When spotted the Captain and Boatwif were taking a stroll up into Sutton this morning, on a quest for Sunday papers. En route gardens were admired, house periods estimated – and competition scarecrows spotted. Packs of lycra-clad cyclists whizzed through the village and directions were given to the slower ones who had lost their way…

            September 2nd: the day of the Sutton Flower and Vegetable Show proclaimed the posters. Boatwif and the Captain wandered on towards the large marquee. CLOSED 12 NOON –2PM FOR JUDGING said the sign. Stewards at the ex-Servicemen’s Club were enticing passers-by with promises of teas, coffees, cakes, BBQ and a brass band. “Let’s press on, just for a bit,” was Boatwif’s suggestion. And there, just a couple of hundred yards ahead, were Hansel and Gretel, in mortal danger, about to enter a house decorated with candy, a prowling witch peering from her window at the innocent pair…

            Back at the ex-Servicemen’s Club the Captain’s need for a caffeine fix could be dealt with: one tea, one coffee, two small cakes, “that whole lemon cake for my wife, it’s her birthday,” a teddybola turn (result: a dolphin won) – and the Flower and Vegetable Show was already in profit! The Doveholes Brass Band had yet to assemble so a return to the boat was declared. One person had seemed missing from the happy band of village helpers – Archers’ fans, there were no strident bossy tones from Lynda Snell, maybe she was elsewhere, in the marquee, organising the Judges!

            Late afternoon there were Happy Birthday calls from the Californian Clan (it’s Labour Day tomorrow, last day of summer, beaches will close, though temperatures will remain high…) and then the Cheshire Three and the Cleddau crew gathered at Sutton Hall for dinner. Recent adventures shared the Cheshire One and Boatwif ventured into the gardens. “I will be the magical princess, Granny.” There was a pause for thought, a rethink, then “No, I will be the Magical Queen and you are the Fairy Godmother!”

            See – fairy tales!

Tomorrow, back to moorings at Higher Poynton

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