Old Friends, Beers and the Seaside

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Back to Weymouth, this time on the bike. Found a nice place for lunch (excellent potato&leek soup) in Dorchester‘s pedestrian precinct.
Bike had lost a bit of coolant, but not much.
Met up with Brian. His family had all left. We talked. Might have had a drink or three. Supper at Enzo’s, then an early night.
Next day much the same, with supper at the pie shop.
Third day was errands, including a trim by a Canadian married to a lady from Poltava, Ukraine.

My return to Weston-super-Mare was via Yeovil.
Found my Weston hotel AOK. Had swung by before Christmas. Close to the beach. Sue was at reception again. Nice to be remembered 🙂
Bike coolant was AOK. Maybe running on highways exacerbates the loss of coolant? Possible cylinder head-gasket issue. Will be going back to see Pat for a new battery on Monday. The replacement battery starts the bike, but not first time.
Spent the next couple of days resting. Have caught a bit of a cough.
Medication was courtesy of the Black Cat, a micropub. I popped in for a coffee, because the place looks like a cafe. Was a real surprise to see the beer barrels! I kid you not! Nick is an excellent host, so there is good craic. Plus there are excellent beers, and ciders. Gotta love a place that has this beer mat……

Sunday was a run to see Jock (another old soldier) in Royal Wootton Bassett. We had lunch, at the pub I was staying at. Then I parked the bike and unpacked a little. We wandered back to Jock’s place for a cuppa. Lots of chat.
Then I returned to my room. Very nice place, and an early night.

Monday morning was very frosty. So took my time checking the bike, having breakfast, and packing.
Bike started but then it was parked next to my room. But when I moved the bike off the patio, had to remove a pannier, as the walkway was very narrow. Switched off the bike. Replaced the pannier. Bike wouldn’t start. Let it rest a minute. Started on the 2nd go. Rode onto Pat’s place. He put in a BMW battery (twice the price) and the bike has been starting AOK ever since 🙂
Pat also confirmed that the head-gasket is the likely culprit. So I will be back next week.
Half dreading going back. My off-roading skills aren’t up to Pat’s. He rode my bike, side-saddle, through a large muddy patch, as if it was on fresh smooth asphalt. It’s so discouraging! hahaha. And just to underline the gap in skills, I slid my rear wheel and then dug a bit of a hole, when leaving.

Next stop was to fill up and find a place for the night. Selected Faversham, based on chat in the Black Cat.
I can recommend Furlongs. Though it is tucked away, not quite on the street of it’s address. Look for the Fleur de Lis Heritage Centre, and take the narrow alley.

Tuesday morning saw sunshine, so I dressed with only 2 layers. Coolant was low, but I had run from Pat’s to here along the highways.

First stop was Canterbury.
First chap I met was from Krakow, Poland. Small world.
Then over to see “Squashed Ian”, but maybe I should have called first. Here is me outside his shop, which was closed……

Wandered around a bit till I found a Moroccan place for lunch. A buffet was perfect as I had skipped breakfast. Nice food, and a mint tea to finish.

Rode onto Margate. Never been here. Rode in to find my hotel, then rode off to fill-up. Back to check in, unpack, and TLC for the bike. Coolant AOK.
First stop was the Harbour Arms. Excellent place. Excellent craic. Just go when the tide is in 😉
Then the nice Lifeboat.
Wednesday’s walkabout confirmed that Margate is “closed” for January. haha. Great place to lurk around, and catch up on the chores that I did not do over Christmas. Eg: updating this blog 🙂


ps: it’s only 2degC, but back up to 9degC tomorrow. Oh to be back in Toronto? I think not. Minus 11degC is forecast for next Monday in TO. Even sunny, that is too cold for riding.

Paul says:

-11C in Toronto I wish! -18, wind chill -33. Though it did go + yesterday.

biker says:

A few additional comments on Margate:

The Turner Contemporary has just the one Turner. The rest being modern.
Memorable? Well.
One disco-ball, a homage to eclipses and disco.
One ring of squished silver-plated brass-band instruments, by someone who did not like their music lessons.

Go across the street into the Old Kent Market, where you can have breakfast and more, in a double-decker bus, INSIDE the market.

A “proper cafe” is Kussan’s. Simple old fashioned food, mug of tea, and good service.

Can recommend the Grain Grocer. Picked up some needed items, as well as a shot of anti-flu drink. Ginger, lemon, honey and other good stuff.

Margate has an old windmill, open only in June, July and August……

Tourist Information don’t know that there is a laundrette in Margate. But there is.

The Tudor House is worth a visit, even if only for the antique carved wooden table, and pair of armchairs.

Twice I have been to the museum. Closed both times. Different reasons.

A return to The Fez was good 🙂
However, the return to The Lifeboat, was not good, as this time I was after food. Disappointing pie.

One of the flea-markets has C5 shop. Didn’t know they were still around.

Recommend a visit to Radio Margate. You can find a comfy couch, proper pot of tea, and an oatmeal biscuit 🙂