The day started wet and concluded wet. It came more of a shock since the previous evening was completly clear. I had spent today’s budget on coffees just to be able to find relief from the rain and cold. Apologies for the lack of photos, but it was that wet I didn’t want to break my camera
Waking up, I found that camping in a recently ploughed field was not the most intelligble idea. Everything soon became muddy once trodden on. It’s times like these when I hate camping. I often find displeasure in camping atleast by myself, even with the convenience it can offer.
It took around one and a half hours to get going. It involved sponging the tent down to remove the excess water and to avoid getting caked in mud further slowed the day down and I felt entrenched in the mud – not in the sense it made everything dirty, but it makes progress slow. I attempted to dry these later in they day next to a radiator, keeping the inner and outer seperate as already there are tell-tale signs of mould on the inside.
I also failed to mention how dirty my poor rickshaw was getting. I suppose atleast it could be cleaned later with the amount of rain that fell.
The first part of my journey was up hill. Hills became lost in mist and the blanket of low-lying cloud. It was dreary and it felt like the day showed little attempt of revealing any of the landscape. Much of the morning was up-hill and it was a fairly kind all the way. The noise of roaring trucks is never plesant when you have to concentrate going uphill and keeping your spirit up with the rain. I atleast appreciated that it wasn’t windy otherwise I would have become a frozen popcicle.
It was suprisingly cold and it was difficult to keep warm. Having layers is difficult; you soon start to sweat underneath which makes you cold if you don’t keep rickshawing. The route took me through Marienmünster, passing a small monastery and with a small uphill section took me down to Höxter. Going downhill was nice but the draft wasn’t. Much of the way was fairly demoralising and I plainly admit it. Weather like this is miserable and it makes the demons come out to play and torment you with negative thoughts. I knew it was one of those bad days, but you have to keep pushing; thinking too big you soon dishearten.
I reached Höxter, a small historic town. I pulled into a bakery cum cafe, situated in a very old town house and slowly I regained warmth and charged up the assortment of gadgets I possess. Shortly after leaving and situating myself outside the center eating my lunch, two young women came over. I’d noticed them looking earlier but never thought much of it as a glance.
They intiated the conversation saying they were journalists for a local newspaper and had seen me in Steinheim, the previous town before. After looking at my website they wanted to hear more about my journey. They asked several questions about why I was doing this and how I came to visit the area. As of always, it’s interesting to get questions about it all from a different point of view. They got a few pictures in front of an old town house dated I think from the 16th century.
In short, I think I emphasised that my journey was about the meeting of people – and being able to share my story along the way. I continued shortly afterwards along a small valley which was comfortable ride along the river.
Arriving in Holzminden, I was eager to get two more hours of riding in before it became too dark. Soon after leaving the town, and taking off my dry clothes, the skies open with all their glory and ferocity. I had to quickly cover everything over, pull down the rain cover and get dressed again. Having rang my parents, it seemed appropraite to stop for the day. That was a good decision; soon the rain intesified that it became loud it could be heard over the phone. At the town center, the tourist information had just shut. None of the cafe’s had wifi and after dashing around in the rain, I found that the Youth Hostel was completly closed. If you could condense a day’s problem into the matter of an hour then I guess that was it. At this stage, I’m not sure what to do. There are few options, and there were such things as a miracle, then now would be a good time to see one.
It will make an eventful evening whatever the outcome is tonight – all the more interesting for you to read.