In Okehampton: Day three - The Seven Year Itch - CycleBlaze

May 28, 2024

In Okehampton: Day three

We’re downstairs at 7 sharp and digging in on our efficiently and quickly presented but likely microwaved breakfasts within ten minutes of ordering them.  The meal goes more quickly this time, with no group of cyclists sitting next to us grilling us with questions and slowing us down.  It’s not long after when Rachael’s finished her second cup and leaves me to work on the blog while she goes upstairs for some important research.

When I open the door she announces her successful research results.  She’s found a bike store in our next stop, Exeter, and called them up to validate that they have the right bike gloves in stock for her so she can replace the pair she lost the right half of back in Tavistock.  So that’s good news.

Not so good though is the weather report.  It’s raining and solidly gray at the moment, but the competing weather reports have different predictions for the rest of the day. says we should get a dry four or five hours in the heart of the day, while YR thinks we should take the day off and wait for tomorrow.  In either case though a morning ride or hike looks out of the question so it’s the obvious time for that overdue trip to the laundromat.

Rachael is pulling together our dirty laundry from various spots when suddenly there’s a gasp of amazement.  She’s found her other glove!  It got buried in the dirty laundry bag somehow, a place she hadn’t thought to look for it in.  Her theory is that maybe its Velcro strip got stuck to a dirty item when she tossed it in the bag.

So that’s fantastic news, and puts us back to a clean slate for lost items on the tour so far.  Instead it goes onto the list of temporarily misplaced items, which unfortunately is quite long by now and steadily growing.

Most of my clothes are in need of a good cleansing by now so I strip down to my last pair of underwear and bike shorts and plan on staying in the room watching the rain come down until she returns - and hoping that she doesn’t have an experience anything like Dave’s Laundry Drama, which has my vote for the funniest story I’ve read lately.

She’s back from the laundromat an hour and a half later, reporting complete success and the sort of upbeat experience she often has at them.  Today her little drama is that she didn’t take laundry detergent with her, planning to buy it there.  Unfortunately their detergent dispenser is out of order so she’s looking at a rainy walk back to the room to get ours unless someone offers to share some.

Someone does offer, reaffirming her faith in humanity; and while she’s waiting out the wash cycles she engages in pleasant conversations with a local and a guy from New Zealand.  It’s a typical laundromat experience for Rachael.  She often comes back reporting of some positive encounter she’s had there.

That done, I check again and after seeing that the weather is still damp but should improve any minute now I get into my bike clothes ready for a ride up into the moors.  And then I look out the window, and decide I should wait awhile yet because in spite of’s latest report the real world report still looks discouraging.

Wrong again,
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Rachael and I continue waiting and watching for improvements for another hour, and then another; and finally Rachael decides to go downstairs for lunch and just go out for her walk later in the day.  Two hours later we’re both still waiting, and I give up on a bike ride and change back to my street clothes hoping for at least a break wide enough so that I can hobble up to the ruined castle a half mile away.

Finally though, even gets the picture right and agrees that it’s raining and isn’t likely to improve before evening so I give up for the day and head downstairs for dinner and another Jail Ale.  Disappointing, but not a tragedy.  It doesn’t hurt either of us to have a real day off, and for the first time in at least a month I’m finally caught up on the blog.

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Patrick O'HaraYeah...good for you two to chill out every now and then.
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3 weeks ago
Rachael AndersonTo Patrick O'HaraI was glad to finally get the laundry done and I really enjoyed visiting with the folks in the laundromat!
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3 weeks ago