Tuesday, October 16, 2012


When we were on the narrrowboat this time, Dave usually steered the boat through the locks while I opened and shut the gates and the paddles. When there is only one of you working the locks, it’s hard work and you have to keep walking to the front and back of the lock to get over to the other side. Sometimes there are little bridges by the tall front gates, but most often you have to walk on a shelf especially designed for the purpose…

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This is not too scary when the gates are shut, if you walk carefully and hang on to the rail.

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But when one of the gates is open and you need to get to the other side, and you can’t be bothered to walk round to the back of the lock and use the shelf on the closed gates, a solution is to step across the gap above the deep chasm. I have always held my breath when I’ve seen Dave do this. This time, I managed to do it myself. The odd thing was that at some locks and times of day I felt confident and stepped across without a problem, and at other times, I looked at the three foot gap and the deep drop and thought “I can’t do that!”

The truth was that I could have done it every time, but only half the time did I feel confident enough to try. There is a lesson in this. 

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And for those of you who don’t understand how locks work, here is a Hepworth tutorial on the subject. (The lock in this tutorial has a bridge at the front.)

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