For Dave’s stag do, the best man James arranged for a group of us to take a trip on Dave’s narrow boat to the Long Itchington Beer Festival thus combining Dave’s loves of beer and boating.
I picked up Lance and we drove to meet Dave and James at Braunston. Once we were all assembled, we started taking the boat down the locks and along the canal to Long Itchington. This being a Dave trip, we started on the booze early and had all had a couple before we reached the first pub.
Here are some pictures of us getting Essa to Long Itchington, scroll down for the rest of the post and some pictures of us drinking and the day after.
Hydraulic sluice gates, much easier to raise than the regular kind but still hard work when you are drinking!
Disappointingly, this is not the first pub on the crawl and you can’t even moor here!
Is it the national cycle network or not? Who can say?
Dave and his dad and a random dog!
Strangely I didn’t take any pictures of us doing the actual pub crawl!
We spent the evening at the beer festival which started off well with a nice outdoor pint in the first pub followed by live music in the second and excellent burgers in the third and gradually went downhill with the pubs becoming more crowded and the people becoming louder and chavier as we progressed. Obviously we became drunker and louder as we progressed too! We were late arriving at the final pub which also had live music and never made it inside as it was completely packed. So instead, we went and harassed the bloke running the burger stall until he re-opened after we promised to buy at least 5 burgers. Lance drunkenly ran around outside the pub shouting that the burger van was open again and soon there were enough people there for him to sell all of his remaining food in under an hour! After eating, we went and collapsed in a function room and had the last drink of the day before heading back to the boat.
Back in the boat, Dave built a huge fire in the stove as it was really cold outside and we settled down to scoffing snacks and drinking more. Mostly though, people fell asleep in corners. It soon became apparent that the fire was making the boat far too hot to sleep in and Dave had to shovel the coals into a bucket of cold water! After that spectacle we rearranged Dave’s 2 person boat to sleep 7 people and settled down for the night.
The refreshment of choice (along with Tesco value bacon rashers) after a hard day of drinking!
Dave’s amazing shirt. It even got a mention in an autograph from a (soon to be) famous Australian singer
Lance has found a place to rest his tired eyes. He was sound asleep until Dave said the word “bridesmaids”.
Steve had been falling asleep since before we left the last pub!
Dave getting rid of unwanted fire.
We were up early in the morning as it will take 4 hours to get back to the cars and then a further 12 for Dave and James to get the boat home! Had breakfast on the move and started to reverse the journey we made yesterday. Spent a very relaxing morning on the boat occasionally operating the odd lock and cooking lunch. Ellie joined us at Braunston where we had lunch before all heading our own separate ways. I assume that Dave finally made it home!
Breakfast roll production line!
A view down the flight of locks we just came up.
Saying goodbye to Ray who parked his car in Long Itchington.
(before it takes over the world!)
Lance working his way along the side of Essa, not sure why.
View from our position relaxing at the front!
There is always washing up to be done (especially with 7 people sharing a space designed for 2!)
This is going to be for lunch