Thursday, 6 May 2010
Day 18 Church Minshull to Warrington
Day 18 has seen my crossing the Manchester Ship Canal and into the centre of Warrington. Gone are those tranquil days of the canal, in exchange for the most lethal road to date. The B5074 has no pavement and is a windy race track, added to which often it has steep sided fences with no verge to get clear of the cars, here you just mould yourself to the shape of the vegetation, difficult when your pregnant with a full term rucksack. Doing my best to be safe, switching sides of the road and waving pass convoys of cars I was making slow progress, this was so until Wixsford, were I opted for a diversion, that I had previously identified. Going through the town firstly, in full Gore Tex battle dress, hi vis rucksack cover and umbrella, as at this point the skies were black and the rain falling. Several looks were given by locals at this strange alien creature that has descended upon their town. I'm sure a posse was forming to run me out of town, but I beat that track before being forced. The next part of the walk was delightful, in countryside, along a farm track, peace, it was great and I knew that would be in short supply today, as I had the A48 to look forward to. Then all of a sudden, for at least a km, my peace and personal space was invaded, by large black flies (horse flies) with drinking straw like black funnels, descending from them. These flies, the size of a penny are not new to me, I have encountered them before, but what was different was the number of them. Hundreds. No thousands. Well loads. They weren't that interested in me, but just got in the way, then it dawned on me. There was I dressed in black, with my waterproof jacket and trousers, additionally, I had the one black walking poles protruding from me, but sadly no wings, otherwise I could fly to John O'Groats. But could they be mistaking me for their King (bees have big queen's - no jokes or comments please!) In silhouette, (I've heard they've bad eyesight) they could have been mistaken. Anyway after swallowing some, and having others enter nose, ears etc. I decided they were up there with dogs and cows, as least preferred creatures. Look closely at the photo and you can see "the fly" The afternoons walk up the A48, all on pavement was lots safer, that the mornings close encounter with traffic. I gradually knocked one feature off after another, all making my arrival to Warrington closer. Past went the M58, on trips to Halewood, this last year I had looked up at this junction, thinking I'll be walking around that junction, and here I was. In the future it'll be, "I walked around that island". Psychologically, this was a major point on the walk, certainly not the prettiest, but significant all the same. Other landmarks closer to the centre was the Trent and Mersey Canal, which I have previously walked down and then crossing the Mancester Ship Canal. Tomorrow, first thing it'll be the Mersey itself. Welcome the North West.