Past Panule, I’ve ridden 33miles or thereabouts, with much walking, and I’ve had enough. I call into a bed and breakfast – but there are only an elderly couple there, who explain (in broken English) that the owner (their son) is away in Goa and won’t be back until later on that night. I can tell they’re getting anxious trying to deal with me, so I move on. I ask around for other places to stay, but one person says the nearest place is 20km away! I’m almost resolved to sleep in the bus shelter and sit and blog for a while.
However, the bus shelter is dirty and dusty and full of ants, so I move on a few miles to the nearest town and sit on the marble platform that is the town centre and decide to stay put. It gets dark and a couple of people approach and ask me where I was going and what I was planning to do. I explained that I couldn’t find a guest house and therefore, if push comes to shove, I’d camp right here unless they could suggest an alternative? They looked aghast and assured me it wasn’t safe to do such a thing but didn’t know of anywhere. A little later on, a couple of chaps pointed to a small restaurant opposite and said this was a good place to get supper. I went there and was pleased to meet a young teenager, who not only served me a wonderful vegetable thali for a very reasonable price but also knew of someone who could put me up for a small sum. She phoned said person and he agreed that he had a room available for me. I followed her for all of about 5 minutes stroll to a place which had small self contained rooms in the grounds – 300 rupees. Sorted – and I didn’t have to risk life and limb by camping in the outside – god forbid.