Under the footbridge at Paddington Basin
I’d never driven far in the dark but I always wanted to try it. All the way from Cowley to Paddington there are no locks to work so it’s perfect for an early evening autumn cruise.
I didn’t want to have to stop along the way so I made a big flask of coffee, grabbed some fruit and put the radio on. Adjusted the headlight, tested the horn, opened a few curtains and stuck the lights on inside the boat. Just in case. Then I set off.
Reached Bull’s Bridge quickly. Carry on and you go to Brentford, so I turned left underneath the small white bridge towards Paddington.
It was quite magical passing rows of moored boats with lights on and smoke pouring out of chimneys. Very few boats were on the move so late.
Drove through Northolt, beside a golf course and then past warehouses, where it began to get dark and spooky. The headlight flattened the perspective and sometimes made it difficult to see which way the canal was turning. Only a few cyclists, headlamps on, were using the towpath.
Moored at the 24 hour supermarket in Kensal Green to resupply then pushed on.
Arrived in Little Venice where boats lined both sides of the canal, double berthed in places. It’s a very popular spot and there were no rings to moor on, so I carried. Drove under the pretty blue bridge, past the floating cafe and on to Paddington basin where I moored behind the train station. I love the basin at night with the office block lights shining and reflecting in the water.