Total Mileage: 168.3 miles
Percentage completed: 10.1%
(Click map to enlarge)
The weather forecast was pretty certain it was to rain until mid afternoon so when I finally left the twelfth century inn this morning it was a great to realise that Exeter had again got it mercifully wrong (and so close to here too! What chance has Scotland of an accurate forecast?)
I tumbled along in fine form, looking forward to a two pub morning: The first, at Spreyton, was where Uncle Tom Cobbley had set out with all his friends to Widdecombe Fair, and looked absolutely perfect in its Devon village setting. Perfect, except that it was shut.
I redoubled my spirits and head down, headed onwards to the next chance of libation a mere 11km further on at Yeoford. Imagine my disappointment to find it very dead too! I resorted to sitting on their car park wall, munching peanut brittle and drinking bottled water, staring forlornly into the black windows of the pub.
I now come to the subject of Dogs. Or, rather Dog Owners. Dogs are quite rightly seen as Man's Best Friend. However, and this is not meant to be sexist, but dogs are obviously not Women's Best Friend.
On the walk up until now, without a single exception, dogs being walked by women when they are not on a lead don't give a monkey's stuff about their owner's desires for the dog to come to heel. The apologetic crap the women come up with after their pooches have slobbered all over you, jumped up at your throat and behaved pretty dreadfully runs something like "I don't understand it- Rover is such a lovely dog normally - he's only being friendly."
These women need licenses. It is not the dog that needs the license - it is the women dog owners - they are not fit to look after an animal they patently have absolutely no control over what-so-ever. How they ever bring up children just beggars the imagination! "I have no idea why little Johhny mugged that old lady - he is such a good boy at home..."
I arrive at Crediton, full of expectation for a decent pub and perhaps a good foody place. No Chance Squared.
Crediton needs a bypass. That way even the traffic can avoid it. Okay, it is Monday, and perhaps some of the better places are shut, but good grief. There is an outcry here at the moment from the local shop-keepers because Tesco want to open a new Superstore.
For the first time in my life, I find myself agreeing with Tesco - and I have a marvelous suggestion for a location for them.
Slap bang in the middle of the town centre.
Bull-doze the lot and start again. The sweetener (bribe?) could be to build an Olde Worlde Pubbe that stayeth open all day on Mondays and serves fine ales pulled by buxom wenches. That way I will be able to get a drink on Monday and the women will be pulling pints rather than setting their barmy pooches on beardy walkers.
I'll get my tin hat now...