Total mileage ~ 52
- The Premier Inn bed. Shame I couldn’t take it with me.
- Staying with Kent Search and Rescue member, Chris, and his partner Janet. So kind of them to let me stay for 2 nights. Despite being independent and happy in my own company, I’m starting to really appreciate the support of others on this trip.
- The Saxon Shore Way from Cliffe to Upper Upnor. Oh how I love well maintained and clearly signposted footpaths. Makes life so much easier.
- I like travelling by train as it triggers memories of great days out with my Mum as a child, and the high speed train from London to Gravesend was a bit of a treat. So smooth…and fast. And call me mad but I like the London tubes too.
- The helpful barman in The Three Tuns PH in Lower Halstow who tried getting me a taxi to Sittingbourne with great difficulty. He put my mind at ease by offering to drive me himself at the end of his shift so I wouldn’t get stranded there. Sometimes you just need someone to say don’t worry I’ll make sure you’re OK and this was one of those times.
- Having a day off in Sittingbourne and managing to get everything I wanted; the next 3 maps and a powerbank to charge my phone. This wouldn’t have been a big deal when I lived at home, but normal things are extra complicated whilst travelling, so when things go well it makes a big positive impact.
- Still packing and dismantling a wardrobe at 3am on the move day.
- Being so stressed and sleep deprived after moving out of my home that I ended up crying into my breakfast in Sainsbury’s cafe. Most unlike me.
- The Saxon Shore Way from Gravesend to Cliffe. Horrible weather plus graffiti, litter, badly signed and closed footpaths, and my inexperience regarding navigation, meant it was a pretty miserable walk, and one that knocked my confidence.
- Deciding to book accommodation a few miles of my route and get a taxi to my B&B rather than bust a gut to find somewhere within a short walk of it almost backfired when I got temporarily stuck in a pub struggling to get a taxi. A stressful end to an already stressful day.
Reflections (what I’ve learned)
- I should’ve got a powerbank (to charge my phone in an emergency) earlier. That would’ve made the difference between embracing the environment and enjoying walking through the stunning Riverside Nature Reserve and having a low battery niggling me and spoiling the day.
- Become more familiar with my phone so it becomes a more useful tool. For example, I’d completely forgotten I’d installed ViewRanger, which would’ve proved useful on my Gravesend to Cliffe walk.