Tewkesbury to Worcester
Two things seem to be running through most daily updates so far: the state of my feet and the fact that I don’t seem to be able to sleep. So, it won’t surprise you that I didn’t sleep too well again last night. To be honest, I’m surprised that I can keep on going by just about managing to get five hours sleep a night! Last night wasn’t any different and I went to bed tired and I woke up this morning tired. Not a good start with seventeen miles ahead of me.
After the technology breakdown last night, which meant me not speaking with the girls, I had a lovely call from them this morning as I was getting myself ready, most unexpected. It was lovely to speak to them and they certainly put me in a good mood.
Breakfast was ok but nothing special and it wasn’t long before I was on the road, the wet road. As was forecast the day before, it was raining but that didn’t worry me too much as I had my wet-weather gear on.
A short walk down the high street and out the other side of town and I had my first obstacle: a very wet, very slippery style to clamber over. These can be difficult enough with the pack in the dry but in the wet, let’s just say that they can be “fun”. This first one almost got the better of me, no doubt to the amusement of the people in the car sitting at the traffic lights right by it but thankfully my walking poles saved the day and allowed me to regain my composure. Phew!
Fun out of the way I started along the Severn Way immediately to be greeted by another field of cows. These weren’t too badly behaved but one thing I’ve noticed since starting this walk of mine and that’s the fact that no matter how big the field, the cows seem to make a point of crapping all over the path. Seriously. Some times I swear they must have formed a conga line and made their way up the path, doing their business every few yards.
Within a mile or so the path took a turn for the worse. The grass got long again but unlike yesterday the long grass was now extremely wet. This made the going pretty tough, and having to keep a close eye on my footing I didn’t really pay much attention to what was going on around me. The rain was still falling so my coat hood restricted my view anyway and the effort to keep on turning my head on top of everything else was just too much.
I made pretty good progress but just after Bushley I took a wrong turn and it wasn’t until I’d walked almost half a mile that I realised I’d made a mistake. Backtracking I got back to where I was supposed to be and realised why I’d gone wrong. There was a small brick bridge I had to cross but there was no Severn Way marker to make it obvious, especially as two trees almost completely covered the bridge making it very difficult to see, unless you knew it was there of course.
Path corrected, and almost an extra mile walked I put my head down, gritted my teeth and tried to pick up the pace a bit, only really noticing that I was passing under the M50. By now my boots and waterproofs were pretty much saturated so wet feet and wet trousers for the rest of the day unfortunately.
A few miles up the path I made my way in to Upton-upon-Severn and the first thing that struck me was the sheer number of pubs by the river. Unfortunately it was too early for lunch and I had quite a few miles left to go, so I didn’t stop but I think I’ll add it to the list of places to re-visit just so I can see what the place is really like.
The path didn’t get any better and as happened too many times for my liking, I saw a “PH” on my map in Severn Stoke and I thought that would be a good place to stop for lunch…but it was closed and up for let. Why does this keep happening to me?! Fortunately I had some food in my pack so I sat on a bench and ate my lunch taking the weight off for twenty minutes or so. Not the lunch I’d really needed, especially as it was still raining and there was no shelter from it while I ate, but what could I do?
Even after the short break I was struggling. I had about seven miles to go, the rain was still falling and the path was horrid – I was really beginning to dislike the Severn Way now. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, long grass is absolutely exhausting to walk through but wet as well? It was horrid! It was time to put my head down and drive to the end of the walk and that’s exactly what I did. Deftones playing on my iPod, teeth gritted, frown permanently on my face I went for it.
Three hours later I trudged my way in to Worcester, wet, tired, feet aching but happy I’d made it through another tough day. Fortunately I’d already booked my room for the night so I checked where it was on my phone and headed straight for it.
It wasn’t too far away and I was soon in my room pleased as punch to see a bath in the bathroom, just what I needed after a day in the rain. So, I had a soak in the bath, did some washing, tried to have a Skype call with the girls (they could see me but I couldn’t see them, but it was nice to speak to them again) and then I popped out to see what Worcester had to offer.
Unfortunately, much like Gloucester, Worcester didn’t really have a lot going for it other than the Cathedral and a few old buildings from what I could see. There were plenty of shops but that was about it. I struggled again to find somewhere I wanted to eat and ended up in Nandos across the road from where I was staying. Now, there’s nothing wrong with Nandos, and it’s been a long time since I had one, I just hope the extra extra hot sauce doesn’t come back to haunt me tomorrow!
And that, as they say is that. Another day completed, another county crossed and just under 323 miles completed on this adventure.
I seem to be having problems this evening updating the Flickr stream to show the photos from today. They all uploaded ok so they’re there but the plugin I use to show them in the sidebar seems to be having problems talking to Flickr. If you want to see them then click on one of the other photos and go to the main photostream from there. Sorry. Hopefully this will sort itself out soon.