Let’s talk breakfast. This “English breakfast” has me baffled. This morning, I sat down to more food than I probably normally eat during an entire day. A starter of “whisky porridge” four pieces of toast, fried in butter, two poached eggs, two good sized pieces of highly salted ham, two sausages, a grilled tomato and bunch of mushrooms. I opted out of the baked beans. That doesn’t include the prestarter starter of fresh fruit and yogurt. I started by filling my bowl with yogurt and few berries and sat down with my tea.
God, this yogurt is good! Wait, it’s not yogurt at all, it’s pure cream. Good lord, how do these people not have heart attacks by 12. I assume this English breakfast is more like, “on holiday” breakfast. There’s no way people can eat this much. There’s enough fat and salt content to produce a whole pig’s worth of sausage.
At any rate, I started my day full. The road out of Stanton was serene. Mostly pastures, the landscape gave way to a storybook scenery complete with palatial manors and creepy forests. One charming feature of this walk has been the kissings gates.
From here, I climbed a pretty big hill. Excited about my achievement, I took this picture.
At the top of the hill was a few miles of farmland and open pasture. Coming down from the hill and passing a ruined abbey, I started to experience intense pain in my right Achilles. I wrapped it with an ace bandage and trudged on to the town of Winchcombe where I enjoyed a quick lunch and a few beers. Achilles a’blaze, I set off up another steep incline to an ancient long burrow and down another steep descent to my stop for the night at Cleeve Hill.
I learned the stingray shuffle, an essential gulf coast maneuver, from my wife. Today, I discovered how to do the sheep shit shimmy.
I had a strange encounter as sat down for dinner at the restaurant in Cleeve Hill. When I got lost yesterday on my way to Stanton, I ran into a long haired, 20 something, roving music festival worker. He helped point me in the right direction. Coincidentally, he had a friend moving to Flagstaff to go to NAU. As I sat down for dinner tonight, I heard a group of guys behind me say “Hey! That’s the guy!” and sure enough, my free-spirited friend was among them. I can’t imagine how he ended up nearly 20 miles from where we met, as he was headed in the opposite direction. We shared a few drinks and had a good time as the sun set.
Another day down. Tomorrow, 16 miles. Exhausted. Foot status: 3. Happiness: 9. The best picture I’ve taken yet:
Feeble footed forbearance for fried food and friendly free spirits.