Today was Day 3 of my Ridgeway adventure, and it was a challenging one due to the weather. The rain was already pouring down before I even set off.
I walked about 14 miles (22.79 km)
My day began with a delightful breakfast courtesy of Louise at Quince Cottage. She also prepared a packed lunch for me and kindly gave me a lift to the spot on the Ridgeway where I’d stopped the previous day.
I hadn’t been walking for five minutes when I stopped to chat with farmers sorting straw bales (that’s what my dad does for work). I continued on my way, familiar with this part of the Ridgeway, which was fortunate as the heavy rain had soaked everything, making it difficult to consult maps.
The rain didn’t let up until around 12 pm, and there weren’t many opportunities for sightseeing or photography with the constant downpour. Despite the rain, I made steady progress.
By noon, I stopped just after crossing the A34 under a tunnel, ate some of my packed lunch, changed my socks, and carried on. My shoes and socks were absolutely drenched!
The day improved significantly when the sun finally came out, making the walk much more pleasant. I did get small blisters on the balls of my feet, which tends to happen with these hiking shoes. I chose to wear them anyway, knowing the weather would be bad today.
I arrived in Streatley much earlier than expected and checked into my room at the pub. My room was still being cleaned, so I enjoyed a pint and some salted peanuts while I waited. Three locals struck up a conversation with me. In the few minutes I was there, they’d been discussing my age and country of origin! It’s always nice to chat with locals, though.
They even arranged a lift for me to the pharmacy for blister plasters, and one of them is coming back later for a drink while I have dinner.
I also met the two lovely ladies who I’ve seen every day at breakfast or dinner. They’re planning to join me for dinner at the pub tonight.
Incredibly, my hotel room has a bath again tonight, so I’m soaking my sore feet before dinner.
I’m a bit worried about the pain of the balls of my feet but I have the night to recover. But first I’m off to grab dinner.
The very good news is that I had no anxiety attacks today. So I think my mental health is improving.
Tomorrow, I’ll be walking to Watlington which should be under 16 miles.