Wife drops me off at Shannon airport. I don't bother having a pint or buying any food. Catch nine thirty Ryan Air flight to Bristol. Lovely morning. Highlight was flying over Cardiff City ground. Well done Neil and the lads for getting promotion!
Plane lands after only forty minutes. Spend nextsix hours people watching at Bristol airport. Sat outside on benches in carpark most of day. The world and his wife seem to be going on holiday today. Only person who makes a conversation with me all day is Irish. Typical! Buy cheap sandwich and a tin of farmhouse Devon cider from Marks and Sparks shop in airport. Not paying airport bar/restaurant prices.
Six hours later, friend arrives from Warsaw. Pay thirteen Pounds for a return ticket to Bristol Temple Mead Station and back to airport. I later lose this ticket!
We missed the train to Weymouth by twenty minutes. Caught Portsmouth train to Bradford on Avon. Three carriages packed with commuters. Passengers practice New York stare. No one speaks.
At a station a guard shouts for people to move up and let more sardines (passengers) into carriages. I tell him to put some more infrastructure/rolling stock and say: "Come back British Rail all is forgiven!" In India you could ride on top of the train. I was not impressed with South Western Railways!
Walk round Bradford On Avon. Beautiful place with buildings made out of Bath stone. Walked in to a chip shop and chip-shop seller asks us if we want anything?
Mr friend replies: "That's why we're here isn't it?"
My friend disappears and goes off taking photographs and I walk into a grocers/off licence and by a bottle of dog or Newcastle brown ale and a bottle opener.
Sit on railway platform and drunken man asks me how much: "Are the chips?" I tell him and he asks me for fifty pence. I give it him. Open my Newky Brown. The inebriated young man comes back with chips and puts thumbs up to me.
Friend says drinking outside is a no no. Can't in England now. Is this so?
Catch train to Dorchester for hour and a half journey. I learn about requested train stops. You tell the guard which station you want to request for it to stop. This is very strange!
Walk through Dorchester town centre. Friend tells me The Mayor of Casterbridge lived there. Then he shows me house where Thomas Hardy worked has an apprentice.
Pubs closed so we go in kebab house and buy botles of water each. We walk a couple of miles towards campsite up an a track where TH use to walk. It is pitchus Blackus and we are not far from from thd campsite. My old friend panics and realizes he hasn't got his small rucksack containing passport, boarding pass etc.. Must have left it at kebab house.
I am now on my own up a country track and start thinking about mad axe men/women? I can't standstill. So I walk back along the track. Suddenly I wonder if my fried left his BIG rucksack with me? I am such a fool. I start lloking for his big rucksack with my mobile phoe, The Big rucksack is nowhere!
Half an hour later I here footsteps. Who could its my friend with his small rucksack. I try to explain that I have mislaid his BIG rucksack. He tells me he took it with him! Phew..!
Walk further along dark lane. Strap breaks on rucksack. Walk a bit further and other strap breaks. I am now carrying rucksack and tent in my arms. Wonderful!
Arrive at campsite, We manage to pitch tents at 1.30 in morning in pitch black. Will pay for tent pitches in morning!
What a day!