When discussing food outlets  in Stone, last night, I had mentioned to Bryn that I had seen a place he would like, though it wasn’t suited to our evening meal. It was called Oatcakes and Milkshakes. I assumed it meant the pancake style oatcakes that are a local speciality. He looked it up but found it closed. He studied the menu and found the oatcakes were savoury. It did other sweet, batter based treats, likewaffles and pancakes. And of course it did milkshakes : regular, loaded or monster size. It opened at 9.OO and his cereal had finished so this morning that is where he headed for breakfast. I went out too, but had already had breakfast aboard. I wanted to find a cash machine since the “cash only” carry out had cleaned me out and I wanted to buy bread. 

We were both successful in our endeavours and Bryn had a savoury oatcake breakfast and a milkshake. Bryn didn’t need lunch after that breakfast. It has been great to have him, but today he was going. We walked him to the station.

He had to start by returning to Stoke. Stone did seem like it had things that are right up his street though, like a Cat Cafe, so I am pleased he at least sampled some of its delights to make his doubling back worthwhile. Plus he likes locks. Stone is a small town but proud of its canal heritage and also has quite an impressive building for a two platform station.


Stone Station

I did a more extensive shopping trip on our return to the boat as this is the biggest shopping opportunity for a little while. I was not really in the mood, but in fact it was a success getting everything I wanted and exceptionally kind service from a staff member. The main thing that was top of the mental list was onions and guess what I forgot! I realised at the self checkout and a member of staff saw  me looking annoyed, assumed it was the machine and offered to help. I told him I was fine, I was just annoyed at myself as I had forgotten onions and was going to have to go round again with my shopping. He asked what kind I wanted and brought me some while I was packing. He is obviously used to working with frustrated and irritated  people and just offering to sort it. It improved my shopping experience no end.

We haven’t travelled far today but we saw a cormorant arrive in front of us. I walked along to the front to see if I could get closer. I felt it a vain hope. It kept well ahead  It would dive then reappear further away. I hoped at the narrowing of a bridge it might go to the side more, but no it went through the bridge underwater and popped up on the other sid before we reached the bridge.


Cormorant, always ahead
Cormorant flying away as we reach the bridge.

Still I was treated to seeing it catch a fish and swallow it before flying off for good. I had left over seafood pizza for lunch and it disappeared pretty fast too.

Another treat to round off our day was a hot Thai delight we have never had before… Not a massage in Stone, but a swift pasta dish with some veg and bang bang satay dip stirred through – tasty!