Cow and Gate
On day 40, we walked from Neyland to Angle. It was a strange one, wandering through a somewhat neglected/unloved landscape of oil refinery perimeters, abandoned villages and quiet fields, all the while being totally disoriented by the wigglage of the estuary and being able to see where we’ve been for days from a different perspective.
Late in the day, we had a large arc of bay to walk round, our destination in sight. We went through a kissing gate (number 4 million or something for the trip probably) and found ourselves in a field of cows, with a couple of metres width of path between a drop down to the beach and an electric fence in front of the cows. As we entered, the cows started gently heading towards us, Seth jokingly apologising that we had no food. The number of cows heading our way, as well as the pace thereof, started to increase and I half joked that we dive through a small gap in the hedge down to the beach if they charge.
Right on cue, they charged. A couple of dozen cows simultaneously began to sprint to the edge of the field, making all sorts of aggressive snorts and noises. Chris and Seth jumped through the hedge, not knowing how far the drop was down to the beach. I had already passed a few metres in front so had to run back and follow them.
As I jumped, Seth turned in horror, believing me to be an intrepid cow that had followed them down, hungry for the blood of two folk musicians.
Luckily for us, the electric fence was obviously enough deterrent and the tide was out such that we had a route along to the next field. Even then though, the cows followed us along, menacingly peering down from above until we had gone beyond their reach.
When we were satisfied that there were enough hedges and streams and fences between us and the evil bovines, we scrambled up the muddy bank, looking left and right for danger as we reached the top. From there, it was an easy walk to Angle, where the village hall provided salvation in the form of a toilet, a second hand book stall and a nice garden to wait for our lift in. Hopefully that will be the last of our farm-animal based drama for the tour but who knows, there’s still c.250 miles to go…