Wednesday 4th May 2022
Today we drove up as far as Newcastle – a city we’re both visiting for the first time. Immediately impressed with its architecture and vibe. Loved seeing the Angel of the North as we arrived. Checked into the County Hotel – grand, central, affordable … with an old fashioned air and the slowest lift ever! Treated ourselves to a fine dining experience tonight at the Six Restaurant, a 6th floor setting overlooking the Tyne. I actually dressed up and everything – dress, heels, jewellery – the lot!!
Have been fighting a series of chest infections in recent weeks – have been taking the meds and resting but it’s clearly not working. So, as this trip was planned I’m going to give it my best shot and whilst being sensible, try and fit in as much fresh air and walking as I can. It feels like my body is swilling around in a cocktail of amoxicillin, paracetamol, covonia, jakemans, lemsip and strepsils …. fresh air and gentle exercise has got to be the answer surely. Well, let’s see.
Thursday 5th May 2022
Not the best of nights between my coughing fits and Steve having to fetch his inhaler from the car in the middle of the night. But we were still up at 8.00am and still resolute to attempt a few hours of walking. First things first … we enjoyed a breakfast at Wetherspoons quayside – the difference in size between the large and small breakfast was like Daddy and Baby Bear meals … but it set us up perfectly for our ramble.
The first few miles was all riverside, the magnificent River Tyne. Such a vibrant area for cafes, restaurants and bars – spoilt for choice. Often we can spend a whole day coastal walking without any outlets for sustenance – here we were overwhelmed with choice but of course didn’t need anything at this stage.
Still riverside, the coastal path (also Hadrians Way at this point) ran along some pretty woodland and we were blessed with a selection of flora and wonderful aroma of blossom.
The second half of the walk was a different story as we were taken away from the river and found ourselves in industrial and housing areas. This was 5 or 6 miles in when we found ourselves gagging for a cuppa … but naturally not a cafe in sight when needed. At 9 miles energy levels were really dropping and we had to resort to a tasteless sandwich from a corner shop and a brief encounter with a chap and his dog in a particularly dodgy area.
Nevertheless, it gave us the burst required to finish the final three miles, taking us into Tynemouth. Treated ourselves to an ice-cream, keenly supervised by a crowd of seagulls, before catching the Metro back to Newcastle.
From one extreme to another, after our posh nosh last night, tonight we ate in Wetherspoons … and it is what it is. Chuffed with the bargain and swift service on using the app, we still found ourselves grumbling about the noise levels, people squeezing past the table, the kitchen door continually banging and the general chilliness – but you’re allowed to be grumpy when you’re old (and tired from 11 miles of coastal walking).
An of course tonight was all about Wycombe Wanderers in the play offs. Not being able to find a Sky Sports Bar, Steve settled for watching the game on his laptop in our hotel room – stocked up with milk and chocolate for the big game (rock and roll)!
Heading further north tomorrow – planning a visit to Holy Island.
Did I mention I was poorly!!!