Monday, November 27 – Somewhere round Altrincham

Owing to a mishap I came home from work early this afternoon, so 4pm saw me speeding away. I took the usual road to Walkden, Worsley and Barton, where I was stopped by a passing ship. As it was getting dark I decided to light up – but my lamp didn’t. I coaxed it, I threatened it, I bullied it, and at last after a good shaking a meek flame appeared. Then, as the bridge closed so my lamp opened, and when I mounted the gas was hissing fiercely. On the Altrincham road just beyond Sale my gas jet died out, and after putting more carbide in it again, expired. Water was now procured and soon a merry flame danced in the air over the lamp. Would it explode? Should I be blown to bits? Continued next week. After righting the infernal thing, I sailed away up a side lane to Timperley.

A shower of rain fell as I stood meditating at the cross-roads, so on went my cape. Two minutes later the rain was a thing of the past, and I was putting my cape where it did most good, then I was able to proceed on in peace. Now I was in a maze of bylanes, and after wandering about for an hour, over the worst lot of cobbles in Cheshire, I came to Northenden. Down Palatine road I bounded, then along Barlow Moor Road to Chorlton, Stretford and Barton. Now the lamp was at its old tricks again. Twenty minutes later I trundled home with a vow of lifelong warfare against all acetylene lamps.

40 miles, 4.5 hours