Cheesed off!

“Do you realise this is the first meal we’ve had since breakfast?” asked the chap on the next table at dinner last night. “Well, it is if you don’t count the cream tea!” added his friend with a chuckle. So that’s how it works on Exmoor. You can eat what you like and then deny it.

There’d been more rain in the night, so today I really had to decide whether to stick to local tracks or venture further afield. Further afield won and I headed for Porlock. It’s a charming spot. Small but busy - quaint but quirky.

It was too nice to stay indoors so I opted for a takeaway sandwich from the Big Cheese deli. I had ham. Mrs Big Cheese wasn’t happy. She didn’t smile at her customers, her partner or the delivery man who dared asked where a competitor was.I was soon able to diagnose her complaint. She’d lost an apostrophe. It may be pedantic of me to notice, but her beautifully drawn sign had snatched one off her and now she was missing it.

A short walk from the centre of the village, a path takes you to the beach. This is no ordinary beach. A salt marsh has gradually taken the fields and stripped the vegetation of life. From here it’s possible to walk to the weir, but I stopped at a memorial. During the 2nd World War, 11 airmen from a US plane were shot down and killed.

The small stone carries their names and a plaque made from a piece of the actual plane itself. I remember reading that the 12th airman had returned to the village, well after the war. Sad times, but still remembered.