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Published: September 17th 2017
Day 11: Manchester to Nantwich.
Woke up early (too common), with just me in the B & B, and a young Scot, upstairs, who had started a new job here and was awaiting an apartment.
I could hear the rain before I peeked through the blinds. Weather check done, I decided I would be cycling on anyway, as the report hinted at the sun poking out later in the day.
After a quick breakfast, I loaded the bike, and then I proceeded with my Manchester exit. This proved more difficult than it should have been. Again, rain splattered GPS, rain splattered glasses, and busy, noisy, wet traffic. Something on my GPS setup wasn't right as the routing arrows looked like tangled spagetti, and the UK streets rarely see finish in the direction they start in. Spent a good 45 minutes, in the pouring rain, playing GPS "Wheres Waldo* at a new intersection layout. I finally figured it out, thanks to a river as a reference. Just when I needed it, I spied a McD's, and dove in for coffee, hash browns, and rain respite.
Similar GPS issues arose in Northwich. Both, I believe, due to substantial redevelopment in areas that were different from my 5 yr old GPS ordnance mapping.
I was caught in heavy rains numerous times, and I made use of tree canopies and bridges along the canal paths for some rain shelter. At Sale (a town), I escaped into Boots pharmacy to purchase a new travel adapter, as I had left mine in a Hostel wall socket a few days back. I have left a few nuggets in different location as I progressed... possibly a form of subliminal load lightening.
Leaving the city, the sun finally appears, and it became quiet pleaseant. Soon I migrated to soggy gravel (grit) trails, which were smooth(ish), but left my rear panniers and tent crusted in grit..initially there were few hills, and straight path... definately a nice break for the legs and lungs..
I stopped for a late lunch of potpie and ale at the Salt Barge Inn.While there, I had numerous talks with an older, tooth deprived gentleman about bike journeys and canal barges and before leaving he gave me a fishing lure talisman he had made and wished me a good journey and lots of sunshine.
More open countryside, also relatively flat, Just prior to Nantwich, I was hit with more heavy rain,, at which time I no longer no longer cared. After a quick tour of the main square, (very pretty, rustic, historic) I found a cafe, overspent on underwhelming ciffee and baked goods, warmed up and dried out. I was able to book an Inn for evening on the outskirts of town...now to find it.
Upon arriving, I felt the need to clean up the grit encrusted bike (ulterior motive). There was no storage shed, but there was a lamp post with a sign indicating the Inn owner was not responsible for stolen bikes. Bike locked to post, I headed back into the Inn for supoer and an ale. I snuck my bike into my room later in the everniing. Day done... Lights out.
Al's Words of Wisdom... If buying cell service in the UK, check the serviced areas before committing. The number of dead zones seem immense and includes some substantial towns. I've had cell service in my tent, on the outskirts, but not in the adjacent town.
Tot: 1.257s; Tpl: 0.091s; cc: 12; qc: 50; dbt: 0.0555s; 1; m:saturn w:www (22.214.171.124); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.4mb