Monday, May 29, 2017

Our train to Paignton

Madeleine? Where?

Colour rush!!!!

4M high Echiums!

Day 9, Mon May 29th, Dartmouth to Teignmouth

We spent three nights in Dartmouth... as planned... but the two days we spent there did not run according to plan. The weather forecast was bad both days... although as it turned out, both days were mostly fine... and so instead of hiking along the Coast Path to Brixham, we spent a day playing games, and another visiting the Coleton FIshacre National Trust house and gardens. Stayed in an excellent little hotel, very friendly and generous, and we ate very well in some of Dartmouth's larger collection of excellent restaurants. A very much appreciated restful interlude after six days of hiking.

Liked Dartmouth... the only negative was the brown stains on many walls due to seagulls defecating on the wing. I suppose it has always been like this along the coast, but I never noticed it before. Some houses looked like a herd of cows had been grazing on their walls... yuck!

Today we had a varied day -- starting off with a ferry ride across the Dart, followed by a steam train to Paignton, then a bus to Babbacombe, a hike (3h15m) to Shaldon, and another ferry to Teignmouth, where we are staying the night. Weather warm and muggy, fog in the morning, mostly burned off by early afternoon. Lots of ups and downs along the coast here... some of them long and steep... so people were panting.

The stretch with the bus from Paignton through the center of Torquay was a bit ghastly at times -- seaside British kitch and pretty rundown in places. Despite this, teeming with people. In contrast to the Coast Path, which has been for the most part pretty empty. Some days we've only seen a couple of other walkers each hour we spent hiking. While I'm glad to not have to walk past and with hordes along the trails, it leaves me less optimistic about democracy. What hope is there that people will choose good representatives, if they can't even make good holiday decisions? Sigh.

A few pictures to follow....

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Saturday, May 27, 2017

Day 6, Fri May 26, Beesands to Dartmouth

Blue skies, easy walk. The Cricket Inn in Beesands is a great place to stay -- not much to look at from outside, but nicely renovated inside, excellent food, and run by a jovial chap for whom the inn seems more like a lifestyle choice than a business. Many locals, pub atmosphere, and a pleasant bunch of Czechs waiting on the tables (once again, what are the Brits going to do if all these service workers from Eastern Europe up and leave???).

As for the hike, either the walk was easy, or we are getting fitter. 9:45 to 3:45, perhaps 45 mins for lunch, and everyone still seemed chipper and energetic on arrival. Dartmouth seems like a nice town... a little bigger than what we have seen so far, but a small town feel to it still. We'll spend three nights here... which will be nice: nomadic life has its attractions, but sometimes it is nice to not have to pack in the morning....

Sent from my iPad