Friday and Saturday yielded two more little runs in the Orienteering Challenge with the other runs here:
Runs 1 and 2
Run number 3
Runs 6 through 9 (finish).
The first one involved a trip to the mega-Sainsbury’s in Even Swindon and began near the Outlet Centre where I eventually hunted down the marker quite distant from the location the organisers’ map indicated:
The plan was to loop over to my old neighbourhood and pick up two more on the way to stock up on wine, liquor and artichoke hearts for the weekend, but the #6 marker was missing, victim to new lamp posts and other construction removals (fences, etc) at the intersection of the Western Flyer path and the National Bike Path #45. Still, once laden with 4 cans of chokes, 1.5 litres of vodka, and 3 each of wine (a box) and tonic I made my way home via Wootton Bassett Road to pick up a third marker for the trip.
Saturday, the holy war continued and I took a trot to Purton with a side trip into the parkland just north of the Link Centre. The exit from this section put me in the Lydiard Park and Manor grounds in which I always get lost.
So, the score sheet now stands at:
At the corner of Pavenhil and Dogridge I finally found the Royal George in the midst of my Sunday run but was really disappointed to find that the place appears to, once again, have gone out of business (like the woman at the Angel suggested on my Thanksgiving Day run last year). A pity.
I ran back into the village and bought a Carling to rack up another 100/100 tick and to properly salute this old Lazurus, hoping it will, once more, return to us.
The initial rush of Thanksgiving cooking done and the birds in a slow cooker (and the flu abated for the time being), I felt like I should take the opportunity to grab a run and headed out to Purton over some nicely wooded hills. You can avoid much of the ugly, suburban sections of Northwest Swindon with some careful planning and most of this trot was very pleasant indeed, especially the last quarter-mile or before the Angel, a nice old house just past the cloistered little path from the south.
As the first customer in, I got to look around a bit and chat with the manageress about the village and its rapidly dying pub culture. Turns out the Royal George recently re-opened but is struggling. This one was nice, with a line of airline-sized Jagermeister bottles incongruous with the ancient timbers holding the house up…or maybe it’s the Jager that’s keeping the roof up….