Just occasionally I am able to take my own family out for a day on the water. Last week we were alone half term and my sister can her brood came to visit Wiltshire for a few days. Luckily, I was able to help with turnaround early, so that we had time for a little day trip up the Kennet and Avon.

We had our training session with Poppy and then we were off. At this time of year we know to come prepared for the Autumnal weather and so were happy that although not hot, there was no rain. A peaceful day with very little traffic on the canal. Indeed we only passed one other boat.

Bacon baps and cups of tea were soon enjoyed… and the biscuits seem to disappear very fast. A swan swam along side and was fed scrambled eggs by Phoebe at the bow. The swans know that boaters love to feed them and are the friendliest swans I have ever known.

We all had a go steering, even my nieces (properly supervised…. I may have had my hand on the tiller too but don’t tell them), and we soon relaxed into the steady pace on the canal.

After turning at the winding hole, we cruised back towards Devizes and decided to moor up and walk over the bridge and along the path to the Hourglass. A lovely busy pub, even on a Monday afternoon, serving delicious food and drinks. We had chips all round, and a pint of the local ale was enjoyed too.

The dayboat is now on its winter break and will start again in March. Moonlighting has had her busiest season ever, with almost every weekend day booked out months in advance. We have already had many booking for 2020 and if you fancy a trip in the summer, it really is a good idea to book as early as you can to avoid disappointment!