Thursday 31 August 2017

Auxerre to Maily-Le-Chateau

> We had our first meal out yesterday (Tuesday) evening. We dinned in in a restaurant adjacent to the port . We all opted for the set price 3 course meal at 21.10 euros. Pate of goats cheese to start, salmon or beef borginion for the main and fruit salad or creme brûlée for desert. The heat of the day continued into the evening so we dined outside again.
> The forecast for Wednesday was for a cooler day with a maximum in the mid 20's. We planned a supermarket shop at 8:00 for a few essentials before setting off at 9:00. Roger went for a run with his his new partner following on a bike. Gerry stayed in the boat and Chris lead Robert and Lyn to the supermarket with a short detour to admire the magnificent old train station. It transpired the supermarket only open at 8:00 on Saturday so we walked across the bridge and had a coffee in "Le Paul Bert" whilst we waited for it to open.
> Essentials purchased, vegetables for tea, wine, beer and water we loaded our bags and bike basket and lugged it back to the boat.
> We set off around 9:45 with Gerry driving the boat. We were the only boat going up the canal and the locks were set in the direction we were traveling. At 11:20 Robert and Lyn took the bikes off the boat and cycled up the canal to just past Cravant. We meet the boat again that was waiting for lock for lock 72 to open a round trip of 10 to 12 miles.
> After lunch we continued to the Port at Cravant. This provided the opportunity to fill up with water. This time there was no charge. Chris stayed with boat whist the rest of us explored the village. Robert and Lyn on bikes and everyone else by foot. The hill out of the village provided a good view of the village and the opportunity to join a couple of cyclists on their ride. Unfortunate we did not have time to follow them to the top. We got back to the boat as the first spots of rain of the holiday started to appear. It did not last long, waterproofs were not required and did not stop us from sitting outside to drive the boat. Lyn had another turn at driving and we were followed up thought the locks by another boat. This meant we had to stop further forward nearer to the lock gates than when we were on our own. Trying to hold the boat in position as the lock was filled explained why two ropes forward and aft were required rather than a single rope in the middle. We had planned to stop at Mailly le Chateux but in the end had to stop one lock short.The locks are only open between 9:00 and 12:00 and from 13:00 to 19:00.

We eat in the boat steak with fresh vegetables , oven roasted tomatoes and mushrooms followed by a fresh fruit salad. The meal started with a blind wine tasting. Chris, Lyn and myself had each selected a bottle of wine from the supermarket for less than 6 euros. Louise acted as sommelier as they were blind tasted and scored by discerning panel. Modesty prevents me from announcing the "winner". In the end the Cabors was the most popular everyone could have another glass of the wine they preferred.

We eat in inside which was a good decision as the rain started as we sat down to eat.

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