My umbrella has been up and down like a fiddlers elbow today. It was raining when I left Sandbach this morning, and it was raining when I finished at Congleton tonight. Surprisingly though I managed to stay dry apart from my feet and mud splattered legs, ha ha. Here I am ready for the off, just about to leave The Wheatsheaf.
Compared to other hotels of a similar price (£40), I wouldn't say this was great, it was adequate. No soap/shower gel in the bathroom. Breakfast was basic, no cereals or fruit juice, no jam/marmalade. I had two eggs, two mushrooms, one tomato, two slices of toast, and a spoonfull of beans, plus a cup of coffee.
Twenty minutes after leaving the hotel I was back to the canal to continue my journey. Here I am going over the M6 motorway half a mile south of Sandbach Services. Headlights on, the spray is severely limiting visibility. I'm glad I'm not down there.
Here is one narrowboat owner trying to be self sufficient. Herbs, tomatoes, and salad leaves are growing in pots on the roof.
Look at this sweet little nautical theme summer house someone has built in their back garden, overlooking the canal. A lovely place to sit, if it isn't raining. It's like a posh shed, I could live in that.
On I plodded in the rain. I decided to come off the canal and walk on the road for a while, maybe my boots wouldn't get wet so quickly. Then I got back on again at Rode Heath and followed it through to the Red Bull junction where one canal goes over the top of the other. Here I turned left towards Congleton.
This is Ramsden Hall, a lovely stately home on the opposite side. A bit further along there was a stile and a footpath to Little Moreton Hall. I was hoping to go and see it, but the path was like a mud bath, and a notice said there would be a charge at the entrance to the drive as it is a National Trust property. Oh dear, I don't think I'll bother.
Most canal bridges go straight across from one side to the other. This is a bit different, a snailly bridge. They built them like this so that the horse could go over the top when the tow path changed from one side to the other.
I made the decision to finish a bit earlier tonight, because if I had gone on for another couple of hours and headed off into Derbyshire, there was a good chance I would not be able to find anywhere to stay. Best to be sure, I don't want to be walking in the dark. I popped into the Tourist Information office in Congleton and they found me a bed in The Bulls Head. The room is nice, soap and gel in the bathroom, We'll see what the breakfast is like tomorrow. I don't think the landlord was best chuffed when I requested breakfast at 8am. He has a disco tonight so he won't be getting to bed very early. Ooops.
It's looking like it might be Buxton tomorrow night, it is forecast to be sunny, yipeee, it will be great.