After a full day tied up just outside the basin at Market Harborough we turned around, did our chores and headed back towards Foxton. We tied up near the bottom lock at around seven o’clock for the night and after a shower each we settled down for the evening. We reflected on our time in Market Harborough where we had shopped and eaten as well as strolled through the streets with the occasional stop for a libation or two. Our final few hours saw us having an impromptu lunch at Pizza Express, Sue’s birthday treat for me and very nice it was too!
After lunch we made a final trip to Sainsbury’s where we picked up some essentials before walking back to the Union Wharf. And that was it, our holiday to Market Harborough had reached its zenith and now we would be heading back to Braunston even though we were in no hurry to get there.
We awoke to blue skies just after six o’clock and after a cup of coffee and some discussion about the day’s cruising plan got up, dressed and ready to go. We decided to take the less complex way of getting to Market Harborough and instead of reversing to the bottom lock, untied and made our way to Debdale wharf and turned there. Of course this added about forty minutes to our journey but we didn’t care and anyway it helped to heat the water up for our daily showers. We passed the odd boat leaving the arm but with the exception of operating the two swing bridges at Foxton, the journey was peaceful and uneventful. The route is about twice as long by water as it is in a straight line but on a sunny day it was a pleasure to cruise this way, even the rendering plant didn’t seem to be operating so we had a smell free trip into the basin.
We didn’t actually reach the basin because the hire fleet that resides there was having a changeover day so we backed up and tied on the visitor moorings just outside it. After emptying the toilet we got changed and made our way into Market Harborough where we met up with Amy and Louise and had some lunch in the local Weatherspoons, The Sugar Loaf. After spending a few hours laughing and generally enjoying the craic, we parted company and did some shopping before making our way back up the hill to the Union Wharf where Phoenix III was moored. We stopped along the way to enjoy a coffee and some carrot cake at a small bistro tucked away from the main street before completing our journey.
Arriving back at our mooring we sat on the back deck and shared a bottle of cold white wine, the perfect accompaniment to a hot sunny afternoon. As the sun moved around we moved our chairs until eventually we were grabbing the last few rays on the towpath near the front of the boat.
And that was it, the last rays of direct sunlight gone, we retreated inside and lit the fire to keep the chill off for the evening. A quick check of the forecast tells us that tomorrow will be similar to today and that the day of our departure, Wednesday will be cloudy but dry – perfect for the start of our journey back to Braunston.