Friday, 19 September 2014

Little Fishing Villages

One of my most favourite things about Cornwall, and where I live are without a doubt the tiny fishing villages. Maybe it's because my dad taught me so many fish tales and I believed so much in Sea serpents, Kelpies and Mermaids that for me, my quiet moments where I'm at most comfort is staring out at the great bleak ocean on a cool evening, idly hoping I might just spot a horned and scaly head among the waves. The Sea is the part of the world where I feel that magic and mystery still has potential; so many deep crevices and abysses unchartered, unexplored... and nothing makes me feel closer to my soul than swimming bare skinned among the chilly waves. Actually, this summer I had the great fortune of swimming with seals off the rocks at Lowlands, near the Lizard. Lowlands is one of my favourite spots; partly because its hard to access so not a great deal of people stroll by (so nude bathing is doable if you're brave) partly because its a great expanse of flat land sheltered by rolling hills and remains of the quarry days but mostly because its an ancient celtic site of historic interest where if you're extra explorative, you can find the remains of some bronze age round houses! Me and George had a fabulous afternoon and I was a bit naughty and went swimming about the rocks. The sea is dangerous there, with high currents and the manacles nearby but I mostly bathed and splashed about the stones stubbing my fleshy toes on the barnacles and chatting to the sealions who like to swim with the divers who often come in that area. It's a rare and beautiful place, and when I'm there... civilisation barely exists at all. Its just a distant memory, a queer dream.
Along from Lowlands, you've got some of my favourite fishing villages in Cornwall. One one side, Coverack and on the other Porthallow and Porthoustock. All three are super close (mere moments) from St.Keverne, Georges home village where I've been living the  past two summers and quite often we find ourselves drifting about there, pier jumping or snatching some lunch in the beautiful seaside cafes. I don't know if its the turquoise lobster pots littering the place, the thatched cottages or the smell of the salty ocean but nothing is quite like a poky fishing village if you're a fan of the quaint.


To celebrate mine and Georges last evening by the sea in Cornwall before heading back to Uni in Bath (Alongside with his dad's birthday) we headed down to the sweet little Porthallow next door for a goodbye meal in one of our favourite spots (and one of this parts best kept secrets!) It's the sweetest little place called the Five Pilchards and is truly a locals pub. The food is always delicious and cooked with love and care, and there's always a great variety of fresh fish of the day on the specials board! It's really a beautiful and original pub, unlike one of my other local favourites "The Shipwrights" at Helford, this pub hasn't been renovated and modernised and doesn't generally appeal to the hip tourist trade. It's poky and filled with the local scene; if you're from the area you're bound to bump into somebody you know inside. The decor is traditional to the Cornish pub theme: Nautical, filled with wooden beams and sailing memorabilia. It looks the same as it may have fifty years ago, and that's why I love it, it's snuggly and comfortable and a true gem. 
I took a stroll over the stony beach and bid goodbye to one of my favourite haunts. There's also a great community village hall here next to the thatched house below where we saw Brave on a film night projected against the wall. Community cinema is fantastic! and the nibbles are so fairly priced for a change 




Georges family keep their boat on this beach, and one sunny day we chugged over to a beautiful hidden cove nearby where the water was so turquoise it felt Mediterranean. I love jumping off boats and swimming in the deep  



I felt like wearing an appropriate print for our meal to pay homage



Oh no... boob is making a bid for freedom



And of course Georges stepmum who know's everybody bumped into friends, like I said... bound to find somebody :)




And its dog friendly too! This well behaved poochie was called Harry


 I find taking photographs of my food really embarrassing when I'm in a restaurant. So this is a big deal for me.. But my cajun chicken burger was just... incredible. I normally go for fish or something silly and weird that I wouldn't cook at home but I'm pretty glad I was "adventurous" and went for a burger. I can almost taste this right now just looking at it and I'm nearly dribbling :P
 


So I'm back in Bath now, settling in and resuming my old job tomorrow at Hall & Woodhouse. I'm in a new place this year over in Lower Weston and I love it. A 3 story Masionette and I'm up in the attic! Closer to the city, the bus routes and right on the river. It's bizzare being able to meet up with George in town for coffee (or smoothie in my case) but I'm sure I'll get used to it soon! I shall be sure to post a house tour soon (For the benefit of my Nan, Dad, Aunts and family that are possibly the only people that read this (and one of the reasons I keep this blog))
Working on the next adventure...




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Saturday, 13 September 2014

Great Expectations at the Minnack

For me and George, although the season of summer is over and dusky autumn evenings are drawing in fast, there are still a precious few days left in our holiday before going back (starting in Georges case!) University in Bath. Yes! Fantastic news, George is accepted at Bath to study 4 years Primary Education +PGCE at the Spa with myself, so finally our long distance love story is at an end, and its just a plain old regular love story now :P
Anyway. I had a rather lazy summer of lounging in the countryside, on the river and taking walks but didn't achieve some of the more exciting things on my to-do list. I didn't manage to get to the Scillies (My dream) didn't go coasteering or banana boating and didn't get to live in the wild (the weather turned too cold). However, in our final weekend I did cram in a few mini adventures! George has no memory of ever visiting Newquay zoo so on Thursday we did the epic drive to Newquay. We didn't take many photo's as the animals were mostly sleeping (I guess they had a busy summer) but we thoroughly enjoyed strolling about the quaint little zoo spotting lemurs and lions. Last night, on impulse and (sort of) by accident, I booked tickets to see Great Expectations at the Minnack.  Myself and George's stepmum Nikki are fans of the classic Dickens tale, so we figured the historic amphitheater carved into the rugged Cornish cliffside would make for a delightful evening . I haven't been to the Minnack for a play in forever, and despite never having seen this particular theatre company we decided to give them a try.
For those of you who aren't familiar with the Minnack Theatre, it's set in the Cliffs of Porthcurno West Cornwall and is a rocky ampitheatre carved into the stone. It faces over the deep blue ocean and puts you in the mind of sea serpents and mermaids. There's no place more dramatic for drama, and we do love a spot of drama. Due to my late booking of the tickets, we were high in the upper ledges so our view was restricted (but made for a quicker escape)




The photo's aren't perfect at all, more snaps really. But I didn't want to walk around obstructing peoples view and intruding to take some photographs. I was restricted to my bums cosy little space on the grass hence the limited photographs.


It's highly recommended you bring cushions and blankets because its pretty breezy on the cliffs! But it makes for snuggly viewing





Mrs. Haversham and Pip


Okay, so my favourite part of the evening (because the performing was a little snoozeworthy) we were fortunate enough to experience our first ever moon rising over the sea. I don't have any photographs good enough worth sharing (no tripod) so instead I'm going to give you a description and let your imagination do the rest ;)

There was a lighthouse beam dancing back and forth on the cliff top. On the deep inky horizon, a planetary pink orb emerged burning from the ocean slowly and for a second we feared the world was ending. When the moon touches the horizon, it gives the impression of being far more enormous than when its high in the center of the sky and the moon was larger than I had ever seen it. The sky was a dark indigo and the moon gave the clouds flickering colours and made them seem as if they were embers burning gently. Watching it from the cliffs ignited something ancient in my soul, I pictured the same phenomenon experienced for hundreds and thousands of years, by an old and ancient people. Always beautiful, Always awe inspiring and Always magnificent.
We come and go, and land comes and goes but the sun, the moon and the sea are old friends and they greet each other in that same majestic manner every dawn and every dusk whether we are there to behold it or not. Watching the planets and the stars makes me feel as little and unimportant as I truly am, but that's when I'm happiest. A tiny spec in creation, but forever privileged to admire and be a part of it.



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