Wednesday, July 21, 2010
Day 68. Reunion City.
I had just about dried out today, after yesterday’s continuous and intensive downpour. We had stayed the night at the extraordinary Great Birchwood Country Park near Lytham, which is a cross between a campsite and a town from the wild west. They have country music and line dancing there at the weekends. We have been intrigued by this place for years. Unfortunately, having now been there, we are none the wiser. The place was a lake, everybody was cowering in their caravans, we did not even make contact with management, so we came away this morning, guilty, without paying (we are trying to contact them about this).
Gay drove me back to the huge sports complex in Preston, just off the Lancaster Canal, where I finished yesterday. My son-in-law Kenny (that's him in the modest t-shirt, a present to him from my granddaughter Alexandra) was with us. We met Karen and Kenny last night for the first time this year. They live and work in Saudi Arabia and are here specially for the end of VBW. They kindly took us for a meal last night.
Soon after setting off, Kenny and I saw this tree, brought down during the night by the rain, which is now totally blocking the canal. It is a big tree and will take some shifting. Then we bowled along the first 16 kms – interrupted only by an interview with Radio Wave in Blackpool – to Guy's Thatched Hamlet at Bilsborrow, where not only was Gay waiting, but so was Nicola with her family, Fabrizio and the two boys Alessandro and Francesco. Again, we have not seen them this year as they live in Italy. We had a coffee there and then Kenny and I completed the other 11 kms which has taken us as far as the Bridge Marina Campsite in Garstang. This is a lovely site, even without the rabbits which are dodging about all over the place.
Tonight Nicola and co are coming to have a meal with us in Garstang. Tomorrow I walk from here to Poulton-le-Fylde, where I went to school. The next day, into Blackpool and the finishing post.
Today’s “route march”, as Kenny called it, was 27 kms. Bringing VBW to 1837.5 kms to date.