LETJOG – Day 8: Tuesday 25 May – BARNSTAPLE to DULVERTON (25 miles)
A long, and very lovely day today, alone in nature. The morning overcast but dry, along sunken lanes and tracks, bordered always with bluebells, campion, wild garlic and buttercup, and serenaded throughout by songbirds, particularly goldfinches, in the hedgerows. The afternoon, up onto Exmoor amongst the gorse, and skylarks audible throughout, despite the rain.
With not another soul outside of the towns, no cyclists, no hikers, no dog walkers, this was my first day of total seclusion, and a chance to catch up with my thoughts. How fortunate to have this time, and to have the good health and fitness to lose oneself in such a wondrous place, any fatigue dispelled by the metronomic planting of the poles to the views, sounds and smells of southern Exmoor.
‘Songbird’, the song, has special meaning for our family, and I am fortunate indeed, in my isolation today, knowing that in two days’ time we have a long weekend planned together, walking from Bridgwater then resting in Cardiff, our first such gathering for many months. I can’t wait to see you all!
So, a great day, rounded off outside by the Barle river at The Bridge Inn with an excellent fish and chips and a St Austell ‘Proper Job’ beer.