What a day, what a long day, but besides the issues and apparent cancelled hotel booking, with a view like this one, it all fades insignificantly into the background and it just doesn't matter.
My alarm woke me early after a short sleep (combination of nervous energy and thin walls to amorous neighbours), then inhaled some breakfast, and rode up to Paddington arriving slightly later than planned, but still in plenty of time for the train. To my surprise someone very special to me, and someone who is hugely supportive, and in their own right tough, resilient and an inspiration, met me there to wish me luck and wave me off. An amazing gesture, and what was to be the highlight of the day...by far.
GWR (Great Western Railway) have these ridiculous bike storage systems which were surely designed by Rubik, standing the bike on its back wheel and trying to thread the front wheel through a hook. After faffing around for 5 mins I eventually hung my bike up and took my seat. I was very nervous about leaving my bike hanging up next to the door for 6 hours, so constantly craned my neck everytime someone went out to use the facilities, or we stopped at a station. As train trips go, it was not relaxing.
After deciding not to line up with 10 other people in a Pret at Paddington where a lonely teenager was serving people coffee, I thought I would get something on the train...unfortunately, no trolley service. Joy. So ate a couple of carb bars, then would look forward to a Pasty in Penzance....unfortunately, the first two shops were both closed. More Joy. So I thought fuck it, I will just ride to Lands End and grab something along the way....unfortunately, the route I planned was not littered with cafes (even more joy), so ended up pulling into Lands End hungrier, and hangrier, than I should be a day before a big ride. Fortunately, there was food, a giant pasty that tasted amazing whilst sitting outside overlooking the ocean. Actual joy.
More food, more water, and more sleep - early night tonight, as only 1 more sleep until the start of my adventure. There has been a lot of training, tiredness and sore muscles along the way but hope that it has all been worth it to complete something that has been on my bucket list for nearly 20 years.
For now food, for tomorrow I ride.