Jenny and I went off for another adventure on Friday. A five hour adventure!
I hadn't planned on it being that long exactly, but I was having such a nice time that I wasn't really bothered about getting back quickly. I caught the train to Shoreham-by-Sea, then rode up the river along the old railway track to Steyning. It took me about 40 minutes or so with a couple of brief stops to read the nice information boards along the route and um-and-ahh a bit about whether or not I was taking the right route! I parked Jenny up outside the Steyning Tea Rooms, and, of course, had to pop in for some refreshment. Like a total idiot, I hadn't taken any water with me, so tea was very much in order.
Plum scone with homemade plum jam, butter and clotted cream:
The Steyning Tea Rooms is very nice, I recommend popping in. Husband and I tried to get in there one Sunday afternoon in the new year, but couldn't find a seat, and I seemed to have timed it well this time as it was beginning to get busy as I left. I had a very nice wander around Steyning, looking in all the little shops. I really liked the Sussex Produce Company, which is a bit like Bill's here in Brighton, with lovely local produce for sale at the front of the shop and a cafe at the back. I bought a couple of fresh figs (yum) and a massive smoked garlic. The bookshop is just fab, too. Such a good selection of children's books, particularly picture books, and lots of nice cards to browse through. I wanted about eight books in there, but I suppose I should be thankful I was on Jenny and couldn't fit them in my basket! There is also a nice little crafty/arty arcade hidden behind an old shop facade, Cobble Stone Walk, which is made up of lots of little chalets selling all sorts of interesting things from cake decorations to antiques to deckchairs. I'd love a little chalet to sell my prints from, maybe next summer....?
So, after my wander about, I jumped back on Jenny and made my way back to Shoreham. The tide had come in while I was in Steyning; the river was very high and very tempting. I could've quite easily stopped to dip my toes. The wind was also against me on the return leg, so it was a little harder going, and took a little longer, but I needed something to work off that scone.
Lancing College in the background there:
Back in Shoreham, I parked up and popped in to a few shops and had another cuppa in Teddy's. They've been digging up the main route through Shoreham village itself for ages, and part of it has been finished now to reveal a lovely continental-style pedestrian area which the local cafes have taken great advantage of. It looks great, and I can imagine it'll boost trade no end and improve the monthly farmers' market.
It was back to the station and back to Brighton then, arriving home just before 4pm for a much-needed shower and leg rest! I seemed to manage the whole ride without any problems at all, so the planning for my trip to Stanmer Park is well under way! If I'm feeling very energetic and ambitious after that, I might train it to Lewes and try the ride back from there. I definitely have loads more energy, and much more of an appetite, which I'm not so sure is a good thing after all the ice cream and scones on our week off! I think I'd like to join a gym again, my membership having lapsed at the one in Hove, but one with a pool this time so I can go for a swim. Will do a bit of research...