Afternoon in Winchester

hill leading down into Winchester

hill leading down into Winchester

Thanks to dysfunctional Stagecoach bus service, miss train to Alton.

64 bus Alton to Winchester now leaves Alton Station 5 minutes later than it did, which means unless train is delayed, can now catch the bus. It used to be timed to leave as the train arrived.

That is the good news, the bad news, 65 bus from Guildford, which used to continue to Winchester as 64 bus, passengers now have to change bus. There is some leeway, as 65 goes into Alton, then returns, but drivers are under no instruction to wait, nor are they under instruction to advise all change at Alton Station. Infrequent travellers who are unaware of the change, are going to find themselves at risk of a return trip before they realise something is amiss.

It could have been worse. 65 was only going to go as far as Farnham leaving a gap between Farnham and Alton.

I alighted before the bus station and walked down the hill into Winchester.

excellent cappuccino

excellent cappuccino

off Jimmy Bean

off Jimmy Bean

Excellent cappuccino off Jimmy Bean, but then I expect nothing less. I also had lunch, mozzarella cheese and tomato in bread hotted up in an oven, which was excellent. For dessert ginger shortbread, which was also excellent. Jimmy Bean, one of the few places in Winchester to get not only decent coffee, but also something decent to eat.

I looked in on Emma in Forte Kitchen and gave her a copy of The Alchemist.

fresh coconut juice and sugar cane juice

fresh coconut juice and sugar cane juice

green coconuts

green coconuts

A guy with a stall selling coconut juice and sugar cane juice. I did not recognise the coconuts, as green, and the nut inside. He chopped off the end, either stick in a straw, or pour in a bottle. Only a couple of mouthfuls. He said luck of the draw. I would have expected another coconut.

The white flesh different to a mature coconut. Jelly-like, not fibrous, although the taste the same.

The sugar cane crushed to obtain the juice. I was surprised how much juice.

The residue he takes to a farm to compost.

He told me that the coconut juice on cartons is not fresh, it has been pasteurised.

I mentioned Food for Thought in Guildford, coconut the shell hacked off, then shrink-wrapped in plastic.

He told me it was worse than I realised. The white flesh will oxidise and turn brown once exposed to air. To stop this happening, they are dipped, if not soaked, in formaldehyde.

On the stall all could be composted, wooden spoons, plant-based cellulose plastic cups and lids, paper cups. If one stall can do it, two counting Jimmy Bean, why not all stalls? Begs the question why does not Winchester set as minimum standard for the market.

River Itchen

River Itchen

River Itchen

River Itchen

A wander around the back streets and along the River Itchen.

P&G Wells, Change Everything? No.

Corner shop, yet again, no watercress soup.

Caught bus with a couple of minutes to spare.

dinner at O'Connor's Secret Garden

dinner at O’Connor’s Secret Garden

Bus arrives at Alton Station as train leaves. Either pop into Waitrose (I did not need anything) or find somewhere to eat. I decided on O’Connor’s Secret Garden.

I alighted at one end of Alton and walked through Alton. Peter was surprised to see me, as not Saturday. I could have had gammon, but decided upon pork medallions with vegetables and colcannon potatoes. It was excellent, but then I expect no less in O’Connor’s Secret Garden. I did not think I would make the train, stayed for crumble. Not up to the standard of the main course, crumble should be crunchy.

I made the train with a couple of minutes to spare.

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