Dales Way

Windermere to Home

For once we didn’t care what the weather was going to be doing. We were in no hurry as the train didn’t leave until 10.49am so we had a leisurely, and what turned out to be, good breakfast.

Back in the room it was quite nice not to have to worry about filling Platypus’s or packing in a certain way, but old habits die hard and we still put everything in dry bags! We left Holly Lodge and went up to Main Street to buy our boot bags and we spent quite a while chatting to the manager about long distance paths and walking in general. As we left we realised that Rachel hadn’t taken a picture of the B&B (as she likes to do) and so it was back to Holly Lodge. Then it was off to Booths, the supermarket, to top up on goodies for the journey home and to pick up a paper. It was a short walk to the station and a wait for the train.

Windermere Station

It turned up early so we boarded and got ourselves comfortable. I always find it sad when I leave a place, even if it hasn’t been that great. I think it is the finality of leaving behind something you have done or been to and hopefully enjoyed. It could also be the fact of the reality of going back to normality and the prospect of the daily grind on the horizon. So it was with a heavy heart that we left. As the train glided along, we watched out for areas we would have walked through or near and it was quite astonishing how quickly we ate up the mileage that had taken us a couple of days to walk.

We arrived at Oxenholme where we had to change to pick up our train to London Euston. It was cold and so we took refuge in the waiting room where we read some of the paper. We had about an hour to wait but the time went quickly and soon our train pulled into the station. We had reserved seats but even so a woman was sitting in one of them so I booted her out, what power! We should have had forward facing seats but they must have turned the coach around as we were facing backwards. This wasn’t a problem to us but a family sitting a few seats behind had a child that gets sick if facing the wrong way. For most of the journey the family was constantly getting up and walking about trying to find another unreserved seat for this girl to sit in. Each time we stopped and there was a turnaround of people and seats, off they went again. We had waited until we got on this longer leg of our journey to have a coffee but having visited the buffet car found that there was no coffee for the entire trip. Great, but fortunately we did have some water so we managed to stay alive.

The journey seemed to drag a bit but eventually we pulled into London Euston and set about getting on to the Underground to London Bridge. It was quite busy but thankfully we had missed the hordes of football fans as it was just after kick off. As we came up out of the ‘hole’ I remembered what time the trains go (sad I know) and so if we got on with it there should be one waiting for us. It transpired that it was the case and so we were soon being whisked ever southwards. We reached Haywards Heath station where our son had come to pick us up, which was a nice thought.

We turned the key in the door and we were back, a bitter sweet moment, it was over and our old life had to start all over again. The cat was nonchalant, as he always is, after we return from all our holidays. The house was in one piece, clean and tidy and relatively well stocked so we didn’t have to go to Sainsbury’s. With pack unloaded for the last time and mud stained clothing in the washing basket, that was it, only the boots to try and revive and finally dry out……


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