MISSION ACCOMPLISHED.

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                                                                          A misty Morecambe Bay.

I know this man walking along the prom, even from the back, it is Peter out with his Thursday walkers. The bad weather has driven them out of the Lakes for a more gentle low level coastal walk from Morecambe to Hest Bank. He is as surprised to see me as I of him. I cycle alongside chatting until we catch up with his mates. He suggests I call and see his wife and him before they go off to Rotterdam next week. The song Rotterdam immediately comes into my head, it is still there. My attempt to sing it is derided, but one of his friends remembers it – The Beautiful South from the 90’s. I ride on to ‘Rotterdam or anywhere’  leaving them to their casual strolling. 

I’m on a mission. You may remember my last cycle outing was aborted and ended up with a rapid return to find my phone with credit card lying on the roof of my car, absent-mindedly left there earlier in the day. Today I’m hoping to reach Over Kellet and visit friends. 

The girl in the tea van wishes me well and gently reminds me to look after my possessions. It is raining and at the back of my mind is the thought of thunderstorms later in the day which wouldn’t be fun on a bike – I can always abort once more. The thin cycling waterproof (more of a windproof) won’t keep the rain out for long, and I’m already damp as I arrive onto the prom at Morecambe. Where is that famous view across the bay?  Hidden in the mist. So head down I cycle on, pausing for the brief encounter mentioned above, and onto the Lancaster Canal at Hest Bank. This was the point of decision, cycle back to Lancaster if the weather was still dubious or head north to Carnforth and the Kellets. I thought I detected some brightness so north it was. This is a grand stretch of canal high above the coastal strip. It was farther to Carnforth than I remembered. The last time I waked along here incidentally was with aforementioned Peter and JD, 2018.

Eventually I leave the canal onto roads and cycle steadily uphill into Over Kellet. I reach my friends’ house just as the next downpour starts – of course they are not in, so I take shelter under their garden umbrella. That is where they find me when they return from the shops and take pity on me with cups of tea and cake, and a good drying round their Aga. I’ve shared many exciting climbing escapades with John in the past until injuries prevented him climbing – but not before he had led the difficult Kipling Groove on Gimmer on his 65th birthday, he only seconded it on his 70th. Two hours later I set forth on delightful undulating lanes in the Limestone country surrounding the Kellets. At one point the road is blocked to cars by a large hedge cutting tractor. I can get by but then spend an anxious time hoping I don’t puncture on all the hawthorn cuttings. Fortunately I escape that fate and drop into Halton to cross the narrow recycled Greyhound Bridge, Penny Bridge to the south bank of the Lune. As is becoming usual mine is the last car in the car park at Halton station. 

The day is not over. When I start the engine and switch on the radio the song that is playing is unbelievably Rotterdam. Yes the one I’d tried to sing to Peter earlier in the day. What is the chance of that one song coming up as soon as I listen in? I sit there transfixed with the tune, the lyrics are more pithy than I remember.

The Beautiful South – Rotterdam (Or Anywhere) (LYRICS) – YouTube  Skip the dreaded adverts.

Still astonished by the coincidence I take to the motorway but feel I have to divert to visit Peter and his wife to tell them of the spooky Rotterdam connection and wish them a good holiday there. More cups of tea and cake follow. They are very generous with their abundant garden vegetables and I come away with a bunch of fresh produce and more importantly home laid Quail eggs for my breakfast the next day. A ratio of four quails (all yoke) to one hen gives a good scrambled mixture.20220909_111152

Not bad for a day of only 20 miles cycled. I enclose a map to show the delightful lanes around the Kellets. The elevation profile is interesting, a day of two halves.

Capture Moreambe

CaptureKellletts.

10 thoughts on “MISSION ACCOMPLISHED.

  1. Michael Graeme

    Rotterdam or anywhere. The cosmos was definitely speaking to you there. The trouble is, when it happens to me, I’ve never any idea what it’s trying to say, other than perhaps to nod it’s acquaintance in passing. 🙂👍 . BTW I was up your way today. Sneaked up Longridge fell from Hurst Green.

    Reply
    1. bowlandclimber Post author

      No I don’t know where these coincidences come from, but I was impressed with the randomness of that one. No wishful thinking involved.
      Hope you missed the rain today – it was torrential down in Bolton.

      Reply
      1. Michael Graeme

        It was touch and go. Heck of a shower came down the Ribble valley, but managed to dodge it. A good day out.

        Reply
  2. conradwalks.blogspot.com

    Reminds me of doing a Munro then chatting with a guy in the car park afterwards and his reference to the unmistakable cairn on the summit which I knew I hadn’t seen. Unfinished business – like you, I had to go back again on another day. I didm’t know quails were domesticated and what is that about yolks only?

    Reply
    1. bowlandclimber Post author

      Yes my friends have some in a hutch and they lay well. There seems to be a majority of yolk to white compared to other eggs, full of minerals. Mind you can’t ‘go to work on one’

      Reply
  3. Eunice

    If I’d known you were in my neck of the woods yesterday we could have met somewhere for coffee and cake 🙂 I’m glad you managed to do your cycle ride this time without leaving anything behind on top of the car, and Peter and his wife sound like a really nice couple.

    Reply
    1. bowlandclimber Post author

      I had enough tea and cake last week but a good idea nonetheless. I was in Bolton meeting up with old climbing friends at the Bob Smithies Pub which I am sure you will know.

      Reply

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