QUEUE JUMPING IN HENNOCK

And here’s another one from Dartmoor in July, a penultimate Devonian tick. Can you guess the last one ?

As Simon will confirm, ticking is the hardest game in the book, particularly when your pubs alternate between “Open 12-3, 6- end of food) and “Open at 5” and you have 3 hours to wait between pubs. But at least that allows the walker to stroll those places that vehicles fear to tread.

Hennock is hard to hard to place, “Teign Valley, up the hill between Bovey Tracey and Chudleigh“, I guess. Till, you realise that you’re the only person in Sheffield who could place Exeter on a map, let alone Bovey.

Great views from the hilltop, and what looks like a UFO on the right but is probably a spaceship.

Normally I tell you about events that have already happened a month ago, but By George was already 3 months gone when I got there. Or else it’s in 2023. I NEVER book anything more than a day head; it tempts fate at my age.

Hennock is a delight for fans of untroubled, untouched ol’ England.

But after 90 minutes energetic walking the bounds I was bored and was wondering if the Palk Arma might open early if I paced up and down, particularly as I saw lights on.

No chance.

So I sat in the bus shelter across the lane for half an hour, ready to pounce when the door opened at 5, and planned my trip to Rousay.

Blimey, looked complicated.

A couple my age (middle) approached the bus shelter and claimed to have done a long walk as well.

Any sign of the pub opening ?” they asked. “10 minutes, I’ve been waiting a while” I said, staking my claim.

And then they only went and stood at the door, queue jumping.

I amble over, pointed to the UFO to distract them, and sneaked in first as the door opened at 16:57.

Just as well, they were right ditherers. I’d ordered and, indeed, drunk my NBSS 3 half of Teignworthy (a steeper than the hill £2.25) while they were still coming in.

The Palk was charming; pickled eggs, dartboard, worn carpet, local beer, proper seating. There’s only another 3,288 pubs like it in Devon like it, I reckon.

And my FINAL Devonian tick wasn’t anything like those 3,288.

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