Spent the rest of the day running around looking for anything useful, and in the process I managed to lose track of my hole in the wall. Not a big deal, since it just had a crafting table and a few resources stashed, but annoying none the less. As night fell I was faced with this:
Yeah, more clay desert at night. I resigned myself to digging another hole, and (as you can see from the display above), starving to death slowly, in the dark. Then...
What's that? Could it be? It is, a town! With no time to lose I ran to the little (very little) village I'd spotted, and after dodging past various creepers and zombies, invited myself into this gent's house. He seemed rather... put out.
Safe for the night, I spent a few minutes reviewing resources. It looks like I actually scored two pieces of string off that spider, so tomorrow, once I find a few more trees or my old hole, I'll build a fishing rod so I can catch some real food!