We had a decent, carbohydrate filled breakfast. Two workmen were also at breakfast, all ready in their gear for the day. The waitress asked them their preference of white of brown toast, and when answered she asked “and..?” standing silently, waiting for a reply. Eventually one of the workmen suggested something to go on the toast and she left them alone. Once she was out of ear shot the workman turned to his mate and said, “she had me under pressure then.”
We went into town to get glucose tablets and the girl at the Superdrug said thank you more than anyone I’ve ever met. I think one of her sentences was: “thanks, thank you, thanks.” Reminded me, in a twisted way, of the scrapyard owner from Appleby. We couldn’t find the tourist information centre, but I managed to get water and crunchie bars from Tesco. Meanwhile, Robert had procured some new maps and donated the old ones to “Oxfam travel.” I had been convinced for a while that Euan had been sneaking weights into my pack, since it seemed to be getting heavier. I hadn’t complained, because I actually thought this was the weight of exhaustion, but no, in fact it was the gathering weight of the maps. For some reason I had stocked all the maps up that we’d collected along the way (evidence that I’m a hoarder), and the mounting weight of these tattered, torn and water-logged charts had added a good few kilos to my pack. Once rid of this load I felt far lighter and ready to proceed.
We tried to get out of town, but ended up going in a large circle, finishing right back where we started outside the hotel. I was too exhausted to care that Robert had wasted an hour with his directions, it wasn’t as if my map reading was much better. We took a moment to figure things out and continued on our way, the correct way this time.
Eventually we ended up in Desborough, a largely residential town. We walked through until we saw a sign for a public toilet, which turned out to be out of order, prompting us to enter the local pub. Whilst I was in the toilet Robert got chatting to the barmaid and eventually we ordered lunch. We decided to settle on lunch partially because I needed the carbs and partially because it had been raining heavily with a bit of hail mixed in for good measure. I had insisted we dried off a little, after which we left and walked to the next town.
A few wee towns later and Robert decided to buy me a doughnut and himself an energy drink. He emerged with a pint of milk and a banana. At least his stomach ulcer seemed to be getting a bit better; I’d been the one complaining recently.
We struggled on through Orlingbury, which was almost the quintessential English village; thatched roofs, oak tree lined roads and pretty lawn in the centre of it all, where Robert tried to climb a tree, and broke it.
After extreme fatigue we made it into Wellingborough and to the Hind, a very pleasant place indeed.