The Itinerary stated “Come and go as you please” and that is what members did. For some, Henley was far enough while others cruised to Pangbourne and some even to Day’s Lock. This provided for plenty of conversation as we compared experiences.

Tales of mooring spaces gave much scope for discussion. Two boats shared the last mooring space at Pangbourne while those at Day’s lock could not find a space and had to return to Shillingford for the night. Cookham was very popular on the final Saturday and several of our boats were rafted so thank you to those on bankside who allowed rafting.

A number of eating places had good reviews including the Bexley Arms in Windsor, The Peking Garden at Pangbourne and the Catherine Wheel (Wetherspoons) in Henley. In the Catherine Wheel, the food was tasty and plentiful (and many choices came with a “free” drink) and the beer was cheap. What more could a boater ask for?

It is always a pleasure to moor at the Upper Thames Yacht Club in Sonning and from there, some of us walked to the Theatre for a meal and to see a play, The Father of the Bride. Everyone agreed that the meal was delicious (most having the steak, mushroom and ale pie) but the reviews of the play were mixed.

One mishap occurred when Julia (Pieces of Eight) trod on a patch of grass that was actually just a cover to a hole that went down to the water. This resulted in a very painful knee. We hope you are soon recovered, Julia. Time will tell whether this mishap results in the award of a yellow duck.

Malbec joined us at Henley on Friday, it’s arrival marked by Ron waving a crutch out of the cockpit while Sheriden did all the work. He was able to report that his foot is now mending.

Julia and Ron were given a half hour start for the walk to the pub on the basis that they were slowed by their injuries. In the event, they sprinted and were two drinks ahead when the rest of us arrived.

Eight club boats were in attendance at the final mooring in Cookham after two boats carried on to their home berths. However, our numbers were swelled by family and members arriving by car for a final BBQ in the evening.

Following the unfortunate weather during the upriver cruise in the last couple of years, we were blessed with very good weather this year. Most days were hot and sunny with a cooling breeze.

As always, thanks are due to Phil (Kerry Ann V) who carried all the equipment for the BBQ’s and led the erection and subsequent dismantling of the tent. Our thanks to everyone for your company and for making the week so enjoyable.

 

Roger Harden, Chimerique