Day 99

Thankfully they are not all like this!

I arrived at Plymouth Argyle more in hope than expectation. They had not responded to my email of introduction and as I cycled through the park to the ground I was tempted to stop off at the circus which was drawing large crowds with lots of excited children seemingly oblivious to the fact that they were walking down a cycle path and were leaving the pedestrian path empty! Anyway, I digress. I was not hugely surprised to find nobody interested enough to even come out to say “hi”. It is after all only the most southern point on the football map and I am sure they get lots of people who cycle 3000 miles to see them. I waited outside their reception for 30 minutes, caught up on my emails and cycled on. Not one of the highlights of the tour but an omenous pre-cursor to what was to come!

Arrived at the venue for tomorrow’s early morning BNI meeting very late at night only to find there is no accommodation, no other within miles and the pub is in the middle of absolute nowhere.

I really did not need that after 7 hours in the saddle. No room at the inn and not a back of a lorry or Wendy House in site!

So, I realised that this was my first “real” night as a refugee. I only got 2 hours sleep and that was sitting in the beer garden. It was my first night outside and I had only a thin towel as a blanket. It reminded me that what I do for a few weeks, others have to do for a few years. The cold and wind finally kicked in at about 4am so I went for a walk to keep warm. The doors to the BNI meeting inn opened at 6am and, not surprisingly, I was first in! No coffee has ever tasted so good!
So, as Bjørn warned me this would be a trip of high HIGHS and low LOWS. today was without doubt one of the VERY lowest. The recent visits to Keith and Carolyn in Hereford and Swansea were among the highest of the many highs. The night sitting outside is best simply forgotten about.

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