Despite the slight excess (I stress slight as it was in my terms) of the previous day I was up early as I had to vacate my room because this was to be the last day of my trip and I had an evening train booked back to London. I asked the young lady in the bar if it would be possible to leave my kit there rather than lug it around and she very kindly agreed to stow it for me. I should mention at this point whilst researching for this small series of blogs that I read, admittedly on the rather good Calderdale Tourist website in the interest of fair reporting, that people round here are very friendly and I cannot find any fault with that statement.
I mentioned that I rarely take breakfast and that is true except when I am back in Northern Ireland and eat an Ulster Fry literally every day but usually about 1400 so I suppose it is properly brunch! These fries are monumental things and would give a heart doctor the twitches due to the level of choresterol involved and although it is not strictly relevant to this I am going to post am image here of the type of things involved and perhaps the reason why I don’t eat breakfast too often!
However, I headed back to the Percy Shaw which features in previous entries to partake of something that I really love i.e. poached eggs in all their myriad forms. Admittedly, it was about 1030 by the time I got round to eating so I was about ready for it. I do like Eggs Benedict but my absolute favourite is Eggs Royale and Wetherspoons do a very good version. It came with the eggs poached just how I like them and offered with a very pleasant Hollandaise sauce not to mention the undoubtedly farmed salmon, tasty as it was. At less than £5 (2015 price) it was good value as is all the food here. Another breakfast favourite is the pancakes with bacon and maple syrup described in a previous entry (two back in Todmorden) and which again was a steal at less than £3 (2015 price) although it is not much more now.
I cannot give actual prices as I edit this in December 2018 as Wetherspoons do not have a national pricing policy and prices vary according to location. I suppose it is to do with overheads. I know their airport outlets are stupidly expensive for a “no-frills” chain. However, enough of this, you are probably here (all 20 of my “followers” (whatever that means in computer speak) at the last count and thank you again) for a following a meagre travelogue so here is the one for this day, sparse as it is but I like to wrap a project up.
I had no plans for the day as the only other building I really wanted to see was the Piece Hall but it was right in the middle of a three year, £19 million refurbishment so that was not an option. I went for yet another fairly aimless wander about doing not much of anything. I had a couple more pints, including a farewell drink in the Old Post Office which I was genuinely sad to leave, walked to the station and caught my train back to London, all without incident. I got home about midnight, crawled into my pit a fairly tired but happy man.
Time at home then for a bit of reflection, not that night obviously but later. What had I learned?
There is still a stereotype within my country that Yorkshiremen are dour, tight-fisted and not accepting of “foreigners” i.e. anyone from the next county never mind country. The stereotype does not appear to have migrated to the fairer sex yet although presumably some equality warrior with nothing better to do shall soon take the matter to Court insisting she should be stereotyped like her brother.
Obviously I have met Yorkshiremen before I went there this time as a 55 year old man. I served with them in the Forces and literally put my life in their hands, and they in mine at which point stereotyping goes out the window a bit, don’t you think?
As I hope my blogs here have shown I was met with nothing but friendliness, civility, good humour and numerous small acts of kindness for which I thank each and every one of the anonymous people who were responsible for them. Even after 30 years living in London I still have a very strong Northern Ireland accent and so was very obviously an outsider and yet I felt very much at home there.
How then to summarise the whole adventure, for such it was. I had visited many places I had never been, had a superb time with dear friends doing something that may well be my favourite leisure activity, met some fascinating people and learned so much along the way as I tend to do when I travel.
I would love to go back to West Yorkshire and undoubtedly will in the fullness of time although I think I would base myself somewhere different. Don’t get me wrong, I loved Halifax but I would merely like to go somewhere else to see some other places. As I write this I am formulating a plan to walk the disused arm of the Halifax canal down to Salterhebble, then walk the Rochdale all the way round. It is only about 17 miles or so and a couple of days will do that, at least it will if I can manage to keep out of all the excellent pubs I told you about! After that the Rochdale joins onto another group of different waterways in what I believe is called the South Pennine Ring so matters can be extended as far as required.
I do hope that my meagre writings here have given you a sense of what I saw and did and how much I enjoyed myself and I trust they were in some way informative. Much as I loved my former websites, I really am getting to like this idea of having my own which I know is not going to be taken away from me unless kaufer has his goons eradicate it so if this site disappears you will know what has happened.
My main problem is that there is so much to do and I do not know what to tackle next. Even with some of it already written it has taken me literally weeks just to cover seven days here. I have three extended trips to Canada to cover, three to Sri Lanka, a month in Malta, three long distance footpaths around London, the list just goes on and on. Northern Ireland anyone? Scotland? Madeira?
I’ll tell you what, we shall make it easy on both of us. You shout out a country and I’ll tell you if I have been there and then write about it. How does that sound? I have not decided what I will do next but I’ll let you know and until then stay tuned and spread the word.
That is why I spend basically all my waking hours on here, I want to get people to travel. Is that such a bad thing? I know all about finance and holiday allowances and family / partner pressure but forget that, it is just snowflakes by the fire.
All I want people to know is that this site is honest. If they do, then I am happy. I had not expected this potentially “last chance saloon” especially as I refuse to use social media. I do thank you for being kind to an old technophobe.
Again, stay tuned and spread the word.