Am taking it easy this afternoon as it has been pouring down all morning. I slept well last night listening to the pittapatta of rain on my tent and awoke early to the sound of ( you guessed it) the pittapatta of rain on my tent.
Last night I spoke to Kerriann on the phone and got her to book me a bed in Bristol YHA. I had a horrible morning walking; it was very wet and muddy and I was truly shocked by the amount of fly tipping on the back lanes and tracks as I approached Bristol. The lanes were disgusting; old fridges and washing machines, plastic waste bags and building debris. Somerset you should be ashamed!
Walking in the suburbs of Bristol was also a culture shock; cars, trucks and buses whizzing past so close. I’ve been spoiled by walking in the quiet countryside for three weeks.
My tent is strung out over the tumble dryers in the drying room – I guess there is no need for tent drying faculties in a modern urban youth hostel. This is a busy place but I suspect I’m the only guest who’s walked here! I can remember when you could only stay at a Youth Hostel if you walked or cycled; strictly no cars or public transport back then! Still, I’m enjoying the luxury of a hot shower, a comfy seat and somewhere to sort out my route for tomorrow.
I bought most of my walking kit from the Cotswold Outdoors because their staff actually use the kit; they know what they’re talking about and give good advice. I called in to see them today as I had a split in one of my gaiters and a tear in my waterproof leggings. Obviously they’ve been through the mill over the past three weeks, in fact they have done more miles in three weeks than most world do in a year. The guys at Cotswold were as good as ever and replaced my leggings and gaiters with no charge. I did in fact upgrade the gaiters to Rab ones as I have been so pleased with my Rab coat. So a big round of applause to Cotswold Outdoors for being such good sports!
I also took the opportunity to get my hair cut. I don’t normally mind my hair and beard getting a bit long but it is difficult to keep them clean when camping. So I’ve had a good trim! What do you think?