Narrow Boats on the Oxford Canal

We’ve had a most marvellous day.  Our good friends Lyn and Tom Lewis are over here to conduct a mini-“cruise” for 5 other couples – on the canals north of Oxford. They have hired two narrow boats for 2 weeks while they’re here, and we met up with them yesterday to sit in on the fun.

Seeing England by boat puts an entirely new perspective on the country.  We floated very slowly by fields with cows and villages with pubs, enjoying a very comfortable boat. Each boat sleeps 6 people, and has two “heads” aboard and one galley for cooking. They are quite long and narrow to fit the extensive canal system throughout England and Scotland, and they travel very slowly.  If we felt like walking, we could hop off on a bank and keep up with the boats until we got tired. If we felt like a cup of tea, that was very possible. Periodically, some of us would have to get off the boat and work the lift bridges or the locks so that we could continue.  Tom even let John and me drive the boat for a time!  Oh, and we sang for a bit too.  They travel perhaps 10 miles in a day, ending at one of the many pubs that dot the countryside. We leave them tonight after one last dinner, so that they can continue north to the Banbury Folk Festival, where Tom will be performing, and we’ll continue on with our travels. Here are some of the pictures from our great day in the sunshine!


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