DAY 26: Abington to Moffat – 18 miles
Waking up to howling wind outside, I was more grateful than ever to have ended up in this room last night. Breakfast this morning was buffet style and as ever I over indulged, finishing off as I did every morning with raspberry jam to force down my last piece of toast. Leaving a note to say thank you to Tarun, I continued through the village to get back on the B-road. And to be honest, this could have been where my write up for the day finished as I then endured without a doubt the most mundane morning. Just long stretches of not much, but extra strong winds and the dull ache continuing in my left shoulder blade.
Until I was joined by a cyclist who – probably like me feeling bored with this monotonous stretch of road – decided to come over say hi. Myrddyn (I hope I spelt that right in the end?) is from Ireland, been working in Scotland and is now cycling to Wales (and chatting to an English chick!) Talking all-sorts, stopping to pick and enjoy wild raspberries, apparently a mouse ran over my foot at one point but I missed it, the company definitely helped to while away some of those tedious miles and take my mind off the heavy pack. We pulled resources to stop and enjoy a picnic at the side of the road; Myrddyn outdoing my apple and cheddar with his offering of ham, Brie and bread! Soon after our late lunch I had to turn off towards my final destination so we said our goodbyes. Those last 5 miles again really dragged.
Finally arriving at Moffat, I found the Bonnington which I had pre-booked the night before. Bang on budget, I didn’t really have any spare money and to be honest I wasn’t really that hungry but I had in my head all day that I wanted a Sunday roast. So once I’d been warmly greeted at the Bonnington by Paul, Leslie and one of their regulars Dave “the walker” I enquired as to where I could find a roast dinner. Paul suggested over the road but in the meantime would I like some tea and cake? I dumped my stuff in my room, very quickly changed then joined them downstairs for my large pot of tea and two different slices of yummy homemade banana cake, and a citrus and chocolate one (thanks Leslie and Mary Berry!) Paul then suggested that they were doing a roast beef – and it was the best in town – so along with Dave, would I like to join them? A free roast, with these lovely people and I wouldn’t have to walk anywhere? Yes please 😋
Turns out they don’t normally invite guests to join them, so I was definitely in the right place at the right time. Or maybe they just thought I needed fattening up? Well judging from the huge roast (with cauliflower cheese) and two huge servings of raspberry pavlova roulade (Mary Berry again) plus a couple of extra fancy chocolates they made me eat… you would think so! Four hours of amazing food, lots of laughs and somehow no red wine (even though it was Malbec and they kept teasing me about it) I finally made it back up to my room, completely and utterly stuffed!
The Bonnington in Moffat, obviously don’t expect the free roast but if you’re ever in the area and looking for somewhere to stay, you won’t find a friendlier hotel in the whole of Scotland 💙