Bath – home of the drop-out?

Today has been mostly spent wasting.

Another day of my life in the car and on a course that both turned out to be needless. 2 months ago, course instructions came through which I queried as a course i’d already attended. Then it was in Brentford. This time, Bath. No-one even had the decency to reply to my queries and, the company being so inflexible there’s no arguing, I duly attended. So today was that day and a 4.30 start was followed by 3 hours driving 170 miles to Bath. Then, 5 minutes into the course, it was confirmed that yes, it was the same course as a year ago. Barring 3 photos that had been updated, it was in fact exactly the same.

Cock and balls.

I hate my employer.

And being so far away, the bonus of finishing at 3.30 isn’t even a bonus. More a “if it’s really less than a day’s course, please don’t patronise me by making the driving part the largest bit of the day”. Still, the train would have taken a trip overnight to make the start time, so at least that trauma wasn’t an option.

So, last night I had the foresight to consider coming home through the rush hour and the lack of running time afterwards. So I packed my running kit with the thought of giving the Garmin a trip around another part of the country.

And, at 3.30, having got changed in the car park (another piece of evidence in Cathy’s armoury of proof in having a boyfriend obsessed with exposing himself!), the Garmin got started.

Now Bath must be the home of the wino. I’m sure of it. Maybe I have got too sheltered, but around the corner from the office, I passed two drunks rowing about who was most obnoxious. Giving them a wide berth, I carried on a little loop to take me to the canal that i’d found at lunch time, having to cut through a million students on the way.

It was truly a nice afternoon (following the rain of the morning), so crossing the road to the canal, I was hoping for a nice jog along by the water. Only to be nasally assaulted by the unmistakeable stench of stale piss, body odour, cigarettes and cider emanating from three more drunks on a bench, this time taking their frustrations out on their dogs. Holding my breath, I dodged them to line up, about 200 yards away, a typical drunk woman, this time with two dogs to complement her bedraggled look as she leant over the park railings, vomiting.

I was getting the hang of this, I thought.

Still, the route cleared as I passed a sign that indicated the canal path (or route, at least…I didn’t follow it all the way!) went all the way to Bristol, a mere 15 miles away. Seemed a civilised way to join the two areas. If only the next bench hadn’t hidden two more drunks having a dry hump. Not nice. Not nice at all. What the hell route has all these people in such a state while college kids, skaters and runners like me are all carrying on as though nothing odd is going on?

I didn’t like it.

Still the next mile and a bit was ok. Nice and sunny, nice and flat and the only other drinking was a group of 4 college kids distributing some Strongbow into little Panda Pop size bottles to each other. Ahh, how sweet – serving an apprenticeship in cider for the main event when they join the proper drunks a mile away. Still, at least the girls still had their make-up on so I guess they were only having a laugh, not a lifestyle choice.

And then I turned around, headed for the car, took a little detour that felt like it would take me to the same place without having to vomit over the dirty drunks and true enough, did, and got in the car.

For a wasted 3.5 hour drive home.

So, the Garmin has seen Bath, I didn’t get any more out of the place than I did when I was last there in 1992 with the college, a broken wrist and worse hair than I have at the moment, but I think it looks quite nice for a proper look in a year or so, maybe. Does anyone know if Bath is worth a better look? Or shall I take two poor trips as proof that better places are everywhere to be found?

Just over 3 miles, 7.19 average pace, rubbish day.

I’m off to bed.

2 responses to “Bath – home of the drop-out?

  1. Oh dear, as a former resident of Bath, I feel duty-bound to defend the city. Admittedly, there are a few drunks and winos hanging about around the station, but it does sound as though you were a bit unlucky.

    Next time, try the Skyline route – 6 miles up and around the hills above the city. It’s one of my absolutely favourite run – nice and dirty across fields and woods with fab views. Download a map here: http://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/main/w-bath_skyline_walk.pdf

  2. Never lived there myself but I have it on good authority that it’s meant to be very nice. However, with all the drunks, surely there’s some kind of game you could make up involving them all. That’d make it more fun. Plus the skyline route looks great!

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