First, I apologise for the delay in continuing with the saga. A lot has happened!
Back to the story. It all started, you will recall when the prop fell off with a loud clonk as we were cruising up the River Thames. After getting safely tied up I phoned a rescue service which specialises in rivers and canals. They asked me to confirm that the engine was a Vetus M4.15 and said they'd get a new prop, but it would probably be the next day. Meanwhile, we looked out for a boat which could give us a tow half a mile upstream where there was a pub and road access.
Well, this must be the quietest reach on the Thames! In two hours just two boats came past, both river cruisers and unsuited to the task. But then a narrowboat came down, but in the wrong direction. I spotted that it had a Boaters' Christian Fellowship sticker on it, so I hailed it, and Bernard and Ann agreed to take us, breasted up to their boat, Ein Cariad. They were also going to the IWA Festival, and we would meet up with them later.
So we were safe and by the Ferryman Inn which did (good) food (partially hidden by trees in the photo above). Now we just had to wait. The prop was sourced from King's Lock chandlers of Middlewich, and was to be sent overnight to the engineer's house.
At about half past two the next afternoon Paul, the engineer contracted by the rescue service, arrived with the prop and immediately set about fitting it.
Fortunately it could all be done through the weed hatch.
Almost three hours later Paul announced that he'd finished, and we could get on our way again. Hooray! A day and a half lost, but I'd calculated that with a few really early starts we could still get to the head of navigation before rolling up at Beale Park for the festival on Friday evening.
But something was to take a turn for the worse.
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