Wednesday, 7 September 2011

Tuesday 6th September

Well, the wait is over. I left home at 6.30am this morning and headed for my first destination, Lancaster. The M25 was good for change and was soon on the M40. I realised however I did not need to stay motorway bound all the way - I was on holiday after all - so decided to take the ‘pretty route’ toward Gloucester. The whole point of a holiday, in my view, is to visit places never been to before. I passed thought Stour-on-the-World, Stratford (avoid at rush-hour), and Henley-in-Arden, where I stopped for breakfast at a charming shop, part cafe, part ladies boutique. The owner, Gwen, was vey chatty (I was the only customer) and she recommended places to visit locally. I will certainly look them up when I return one day. But for now I had to continue North.

The weather, as I am sure you are aware, was foul today. Rain followed me all the way up the M6 to Lancaster, before turning into a full scale gale later in the day.
I had checked out some ‘places of interest’ to visit in Lancaster and found the first one easily (thank goodness for Navigation devices). This was the Lancaster Leisure Park and Antiques Centre. Could not see much of the park due to the weather, so took shelter in the antiques centre. Wow, it is huge. Hundreds of small rooms or stalls run buy dealers, who are not always there, but you have to take a shopping basket around with you and take your purchase to the reception and pay. (don’t worry Carol, only brought one item).
Also in this ‘park’ is the Lancaster Brewery, which has just opened a new reception, bar and restaurant. All very smart and affordable, and excellent beer. Again however, I was the only customer on this wet and windy day.
Moving on I checked out my B&B for the night. Small but comfortable, and a pleasant host. Coincidentally, she is from near Fort William, where I head for tomorrow.

It is surprising how much, or how far, you can travel when leaving home at 6.30am. It was still only 2.30pm to I headed to my other planned tourist spot, Morecambe Bay.
The tide was out and the wind was in. These were the 60mph winds I mentioned. My new all weather coat passed the test, but not the trousers.
I am sure it is a lovely spot on a bright sunny day, but today was not one of them. It did however allow me to take some interesting photos of storm clouds and bobbing fishing boats.
After a change into dry clothes I ventured in Lancaster this evening. Being a Uni town I expected it to be full of life - wrong. They don’t go back until the end of the month, so it was more of a ghost town - a wet ghost town. So I did what most sensible people do on a wet Tuesday, I went to the cinema. If you haven’t seen Apollo 18 then wait for the DVD. If you have you, will know what I mean.
So, day one over and ready for my fist full English Breakfast (the Scottish ones are the same but with black pudding - yummy).
Tomorrow is the longest leg of the drive to Fort William, but I hope to stop off at wherever it takes my fancy, and discover more new and exciting places in the wonderfull country of ours.

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