Wednesday, August 16, 2006


Tuesday 15th August

Bondi decides he is going to sit in the middle of the B&B living room during breakfast in the adjoining room, so he can smell the food and inspect the other guests.

Not surprisingly, I don't have much planned today. Postcards and pissing around the Bowness area will do. We drive down to the little seaside town of Silloth, which is in a Blackpudlian timewarp of no interest to me on this cool, windy day. I end up cruising into Carlisle for some coffee. While I'm sitting outside writing postcards, an old lady (one of dozens that hour) stops to ask why Bondi seems tired. I explain that he's just walked Hadrian's Wall: "What? He's just walked his head into a wall?".

Bondi attracts a small crowd in the Carlisle streets and a teenage girl says something at me, but her Geordie-inflected Vicki Pollardism was incomprehensible. I said "I'm sorry but I don't understand a single word of what you just said" - leaving her completely slack-jawed, and her boyfriend in a sniggering fit.

On the way back to Bowness, we see a few dozen walkers plodding through the final miles of the path. At dinner, I'm paired with Mark, a 30ish guy from Durham who is beginning an eastward walk tomorrow. He's budgeted 4 days ie 25 miles/day to do it, carrying his camping kit and a load of reservations about having told so many people he was going to do this walk.

I got a second chance at the Spotted Dick. Served up with a slice of star-fruit and raspberry sauce drizzled through the custard, I'm sure it bears little resemblance to my mother's school fare.

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