24 April – Heavy Packs and a Longer Way Today

We have just arrived at the charming youth hostel of Tanners Hatch after a six and a half hour walk with heavier than usual packs. Tanners is well off the road, not anywhere near a shop or pub and is self catering only. Soooo… We carried our lunch for today, dinner for tonight, breakfast and lunch for tomorrow. Pat, Sally and I were glad to unload these supplies into a well serviced kitchen!

Marianne took another day off from through walking. Tim gave her a ride to a nearby car park and she walked in from there. She spent her day walking around the area with a light pack. We met up with her on the trail which was a nice surprise. Unfortunately she had not been able to scout out a pub or any beers so at the moment the kettle is boiling for tea.

It was a bit cooler again today. Really a very pleasant temperature for walking. We thought it might rain at one point – it looks like it will happen at any moment – but no matter, we are comfortable in big easy-chairs by a fire.

Despite this being advertised as a walk-in only, there is a fellow here with a support vehicle for a school group (who are camping outside). He has just now taken Marianne into the nearest town on a wine run. Things are looking up! This fellow is a retired Sergeant Major of the Royal Logistics Core. Stories abound. The manager here this week is Andrew, who we have now convinced to eat all our left overs! Yesterday Marianne did an excellent job in supply acquisition, thinking we might eat enough to feed an army! Better too much food than not enough! We have enough, and our meal was delicious!

For those of you who aren’t familiar with hostel life, let me give you an idea. Here there are two small dorms which have a sink in each room, one is for women and the other men. There is a kitchen. There is a living room with the fire. There is a dining room. Outside there are the showers and toilets. Most places have toilets in the main building but this place is quite old.

Good night from atmospheric Tanners Hatch youth hostel.

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