Please don't feed the animals!

Published: September 17th 2017
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Geo: 51.5305, -2.34352

Today's adventure, boys and girls, takes us on a 12 mile journey to Old Sodbury! It was supposed to be another 20 mile day.....but as I've mentioned previously, I become unbearable around 15 (and since I haven't had a boot throwing fit yet) so we decided to lop off a few miles with a short bus ride to make IT and ME more enjoyable.

So Ronnie drove us to the bus station and we were off! First stop.....Wotten-under-Edge! Today's walk was really nice. Across fields, through wooded areas, up hill.....down hill, down "droving" roads. The weather has been beautiful! Warm....hotter when heading uphill and sunshiny!

The views from the tops of hills now show more crops and all the fields are divided by hedgerows. Even the roads are edged in hedgerows. There are plenty of times that we are on one side of the hedge and cars are driving on the other side.

A nice lady in Wotten told us that we should make a point of stopping in Upper Hawkesbury at the Beaufort. Arms if we needed lunch or a drink. Well, as luck would have it, we were right outside of town at lunchtime so we decided to give it a go. To this point in the trip, it seems that every decision we've made is a good one....and this one was no different. This was the smallest town pub we'd been in and oh, what a charming place. It was the epitomy of everything you've ever heard of about an pub, including a local drinker who would engage anyone in conversation who'd allow him. I had missed having an ale in Dursley, so I ordered a halfpint of Bristol Sunrise. I have yet to be disappointed with any of the ales and don't even mind that they aren't freezing cold.

We both enjoyed our meals....steak and ale pie for me.....a cheesy, potato pancakey, fried up thingy for Mom. Talked with a few of the locals, who are always in the mood for a chat and then set off on the second half of our day.

So off we go to Old Sodbury.....down that drover's road, up and down into towns, through fields and pasture til we are 1/2 mile from our destination. We came to a field where the farmer is just loading up his hay rolls and taking them out of his fields. So I ask Mom what they do with all of the hay that is still laying in the field. She says she doesn't know if they just let it lie there, whether they rake it up or if they let some animals loose to eat it up. I still don't have an answer but I knew that I thought the animals should get it.

You'd think that by now we'd be used to walking through field filled with livestock. The sheep always run away so its easy to walk through those pastures. I've even fed horses by picking some grasses for them to munch on. So it was no different when we crossed that field of hay and came to a pasture with big black and white dairy cows. As we climbed over the stile (by now we are absolute experts at gates, kissing gates and stiles) I noticed that these cows were in no hurry to move, in fact, they were looking a little intimidating. They were all staring at us.

I grabbed a handful of hay from just below the stile, climbed over and we started toward the cows. The field was full of big piles of cow poop which we deftly sidestepped.....until I thought i'd give them a peace offering. Uh, wrong idea. Cows to the front and left of us......fence to the right. As soon as I laid the hay down as a gesture of good faith.....the ungrateful, greedy bastards ran at me! Ok, maybe RUN is a slight exaggeration but they did move with a purpose in my general direction! Accounts as to what happened next vary.....I say that I yelled at Mom to get a move on. Mom says everything was fine til I screamed that the cows were gonna get me! Well, unfortunately for Mom, I scared her and into a pile of fresh cow poop she went, lol. She got it all over her shoes, legs and pants. I tried hard to keep my composure and failed miserably. I laughed the rest of the way to our B&B.

I was in luck with our B&B in Old Sodbury. The only place to stay is the Dog Inn.....rooms and a pub! Ale of the evening was called B.O.B. and I wasn't disappointed.

At this point we had decided to take the bus into Bath instead of walking the last 20 miles. People kept telling us that we weren't allowing ourselves enough time and we would be disappointed if we didn't spend a couple of days. So, on to Bath!!

Additional photos below
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16th July 2011

This is great stuff to read, thanks so much. Say hi to Jean for me!
16th July 2011

I can't believe Jean's minor catastrophe has left me speechless and laughing. Tam, did you at least get a picture?
27th July 2011 is 2:15am and I am laughing histerically at your story with the cows...I am glad u r having fun on the trip and your stories r great!

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