Monday, 1 August 2011

TV nightmare

02.45 in the morning and that damn television in the next room at the hotel where I was staying was still blaring out. They must've gone to sleep and left it on, I thought. I'd only slept fitfully up till then and at that time in the morning it was impossible to get back to sleep. So I rang the night porter, who went up to the room and turned it off; apparently they had checked out the previous day. In the morning I tried to get a discount for the inconvenience, but the manager was having none of it, saying it wasn't the hotel's fault. I maintained it was; once a guest has checked out the room is their responsibility. So what should I have done? I wish I'd stuck to my guns and paid perhaps £10 less than I was being charged. But I gave in and paid the full amount. I'll follow it up with a letter, but I doubt if I'll get any joy.

After a tour of the Isle of Grain, getting as close to Thamesport as I dared without being mowed down by container lorries, I looped back along minor roads and off-road tracks to Gravesend, where I met Stephen Craven at the railway station. Together we cycled to Dartford, and then mainly along riverside paths to Woolwich and eventually to Stephen's house in Greenwich. Some of the off-road tracks had barriers designed to keep our motorcycles. But I find they also restrict my bike, with its wide panniers. I don't know whose responsibility these barriers are, presumably local councils, but I think local cycling clubs and/or Sustrans groups should campaign to have them removed, or at least to have the design changed.

It had been the hottest day so far, and after some 60 miles of cycling I was pleased to get into a cool bath.

Stephen's wife Linda had cooked an excellent roast chicken supper, and an early night now beckons to make up for last night's lack of sleep.

Finally, the Thought for Today. Don't be a moaner. Other people don't want to hear your problems or complaints. Keep them to yourself. Sort them out 'in-house' and find your own solutions to them.

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