Weather: Sunny with some clouds
I hadn’t any specific plans for this day apart from those mentioned yesterday. So I had a leisurely start. As it turned out Bryan, my host, is a walker and cyclist himself and provided me with some maps of the area. And he offered that I could have my clothes washed with them by just putting some money in an honesty box. Of course, I accepted.
Then I strolled through the town. I wouldn’t call Barnstaple an exceptional pretty town, but compared to those I came through before it feels at least like a town which isn’t only a facade for tourists, but a place where real people spend ordinary lives.
As things sometimes happen I was just passing a mobile phone shop on High Street when I bumped into Jack who was equally surprised. We spent some time with a coffee in the sun and chatted. Actually, he made it up to Bude, but problems with his mobile phone forced him to take a two hours bus ride into Barnstaple to sort this out. We exchanged our experiences on the coast path so far and he now considers leaving it here as well.
Then I collected my parcel from the post office and sorted its contents as well as what I still had in my backpack and packed the parcel again with what get posted back home.
The route replanning is done as well, I will more or less follow the Macmillan Way West which-as Bryan confirmed-is mostly waymarked, although signs might be overgrown in parts. And he said that this route would provide a good insight into Exmoor. Being a way also marked on OS maps this should make navigation reasonable straightforward. My original plan had this path as a basic “handrail” for the first leg from Minehead, so using more of it just fits fine.
I spent the evening in a pub chatting with some locals about nearly everything and now I’m sure I had a beer more than was sensible. Never mind, the next three days or so won’t see too many pubs so I don’t care too much about it. And in any case I have to keep hydrated, right?