Early this week we ‘crossed over’ the route we took on our earlier walk from Land’s End to John o’Groats. (see LEJOG page) This was Monday following an early morning Communion service at Christchurch cathedral Oxford. There is something very peaceful about early communion services and this was no exception. We then walked along the Thames path upstream doing about 4 miles of our other long walk only in the other direction.
The next day saw us beginning to see the lovely honey-coloured Cotswold limestone. One early visit was to the excavated site of a Roman villa at North Leigh. The villa must have been enormous with two wings and three bath houses. A fine mosaic pavement (now under cover from the elements for protection was also discovered. The River Evenlode was full after the floods, but in only a few places did we have boggy ground to contend with and only once had a ditch diverted itself along the path, giving us a choice between a wading exercise or negotiating brambles!
John’s geographical instincts were to the fore when we passed a field of miscanthus. This is one of the crops used for bio-fuel for generating electricity. The farmer who planted the crop should have harvested it before Christmas but the flooding prevented this. He had been selling to Didcot Power station, but this has recently closed so we are not sure of what will happen to the crop.
Between some of the Cotswold villages runs a very special bus ‘The Villager’. This is the epitome of the friendly local service. Driver Peter was most careful with his passengers, almost all regulars, helping them to the door with their shopping and going out of his way! It was an excellent service.
This weekend we worshipped with the congregation of St Mary Magdalene Knighton and re-made some friendships there. We saw the pantomime ‘Dick Whittington’ by the Knighton Players. John preached and we got a great welcome and support there
We have met many supportive people this week, beginning with Canon Edmund Newey at Christchurch Cathedral Oxford; Paul, the manager of the Toll booth on Swinford bridge, Maureen, William and Janet in Eynsham; Arthur, lifetime resident of Eynsham; Harriett who cut my hair at La Diva in Eynsham; Alison at Stonesfield; very helpful assisants at Witney TIC Sharon and Lyndy; Simon a farmer from Chaddlington, Mandy and her dog Bramble at Ascott-under-Wychwood; Alan in Stow (thank you for taking the photo); Peter the drive of ‘The Villager’, John and Ros met in Lucy’s teashopp, Celia and Lucia in Lower Slaughter, Caroline and Chris on the footpath to Upper Slaughter, James on the bus from Winchcombe to Cheltenham, Robert and his dog who walked some of the way with us to Winchcombe. Special mention of Joanna at the Jewellers in Fosse Park. Good to meet you all and thank you for your encouragement.
This week’s statistics
Miles walked this week 56 Total miles walked 264
Money raised so far Online £480 Offline £1033.69 Total £1513.69
Kissing gates 30
Trig points 1
This week’s Scrabble Scores Nancy 0 John 0 Draw 1