Road Trip – Day 9 – Lands’ End


And so we began the final full day of travel, and the journey to the end of the world (well, Endland anyway) and conclude my main goal for this trip; completing the trip from John O Groats to Lands’ End. There was just one problem, it was the Saturday before the last week in August and people were getting their last minute holidays in. So when I say “one problem” what I actually mean to say is “every sodding caravan in Britain”.

Arriving in Cornwall I reminded myself of one of the worst jokes told in Japanese, but due to it’s awfulness it was actually a tad funny. (This video is automatically set to start at 2:35, and you’ll know when the joke is over)

But at long last, we had arrived.

After such a long trip, Sebastian rests just before crossing the line.
By the way, that sign is in Cornish
However you want to say it, you've made it baby!

I’d been to Lands’ End once before, back when I was working in Somerset, but this time around we couldn’t see all the crazy (and somewhat meaningless) attractions that were there. It does feel somewhat opposite to John O Groats which I guess is to be expected seeing as they’re (quite literally) at different ends of Great Britain.

Want a photo with the sign? It'll cost you.
They didn't have guns, they weren't that dangerous.
Suddenly Sebastian became interested in diving.
The guest book at the Lands' End Hotel, what we came all this way for.
Not easy to write a signature when the pen is longer than your height.

In the cafe we tried the very English tradition of Cream Teas (something I’d never actually done before), then we headed back to the car.

Sebastian does a luggage check
Watch out! They'll sue you!
Sebastian is joined by a Hikikomori for the mile count. 204,612 miles.

Off topic for a moment, remember that 5000 report I did on hikikomori last Summer? Well, last month the Oxford English Dictionary decided to actually add the word hikikomori! I’m glad this happened after I did my report, otherwise I’d have had to cut out my chunk on different ‘possible’ English definitions.

noun (plural same)
[mass noun] (in Japan) the abnormal avoidance of social contact, typically by adolescent males
[count noun] a person who avoids social contact

Origin: Japanese, literally ‘staying indoors, (social) withdrawal’
Oxford Dictionaries

We left the most southern-westernly place of mainland Britain with a desire to see the beach. The weather being the pretty much the same as it had been when we went to Prestatyn, we knew that walking on the beach would result in a lot of sand entering the car. However, by this time we had a couple of spare towels, so could use them to knock off any sand. A lot of beaches on the south coast are said to be pebble beaches, so with this in mind we headed to somewhere I knew had a sandy one, a place I used to work, Bude.

'Life's a Beach' in Bude
Sebastian is King of the Castle

From Bude we started making our way on the final leg of our journey, and pointed the car (not literally) East, towards London Heathrow. It was a long trip, but we had planned for this and would be sleeping in the car part-way due to the early afternoon flight.

We had dinner at a fairly nice restaurant just outside of Barnstaple. With it being my friends last English meal, we opted for a traditional British dish. We actually would have liked a Sunday Dinner, but with it being Saturday we had to go for a beef carvery. We also had a fish and chips meal, and shared the two between us.

We stopped at Bridgwater service station on the M5 for a break. My friend wanted to make use of the showers (something I knew many service stations had). However even though showers were available in the men’s loo, there weren’t any in the ladies’. To be honest I can’t say I’ve checked every ladies’ toilet in every motorway service station I’ve been in to see whether or not they had a shower, but this was very annoying for my friend. She had to use the mens’, but quickly shot into the disabled toilets.

Shower time? Not if you're a lady I'm afraid.

We carried on toward Heathrow and parked up on Baydon Road, just off junction 14 of the M4 for the last night of the trip.

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