Penzance, The Isles of Scilly and Sunburn
04.06.2007 - 08.06.2007
Its bright and early Monday morning and back on the road again.
I hopped on a train down to Penzance which is the last train stop in Cornwall, and yes, the local rugby club are called the Pirates
Well prepared as usual I bought my ticket on the train and popped over to the Tourist Information Centre when I got to town to find somewhere to stay.
In the end I chose a B&B which was just over a mile away but felt like about 5 with the backpack and other flotsam and jetsam I keep accumulating. I could get taxi's but I'm really trying to get used to walking and lugging my stuff.
It was a beautiful little place and had wifi, what more could I want.
Penzance is a seaside town and they have this wonderful esplanade running along the sea about 2 miles long. They have avoided the tourist trap stuff and with all that refreshing ocean air, pebble beaches, cold cold water, greenery and relaxing atmosphere I soon settled in.
For the Tuesday I booked a helicopter flight to the Isles of Scilly. Up till now I think a helicopter is one of the few airborne things I havent been in. After this trip I am now totally in love with helicopters. What a blast !!! I love the way they just go straight UP ....
Now to the Isles of Scilly. I had a choice of going to St Mary's which is the main island or to Tresco. I chose Tresco. Picture this .. a 20 minute helicopter ride, an island that at best can take a total of about 800 people, temperate climate, white sand beaches, beautiful azure blue water, no cars, little cottages, farms, lakes and an abbey with acres of gardens with plants from all over the world.
Meandering through small paths, sun shining, birds singing, no pollution, noise or otherwise, plenty of benches at strategic places, views to die for.
I was in heaven. The weather turned it on and it was a beautiful sunny day in the mid 20's. I wandered around, the whole island takes a couple of hours to walk, had a delicious lunch and then meandered through the abbey gardens. There was a beautiful patch of lawn and I lied down for a while in the sun with my book and promptly fell asleep. I woke up with such a start and had a small panic about the time, but it was fine. My flight back wasnt till 5 and I made it with plenty of time. HaHa and I who should know better had a very nice dose of sunburn. No hat or sunscreen and I'm red as a beet.
It would be an absolutely lovely place to book a cottage and just chill out for a week or so.
I had booked a mystery tour with a local operator and he was fully booked for Wed so had to make it Thursday. This left Wednesday a very good day to head down to Lands End. I got the local bus down, it takes about an hour and yuk. It is like a big theme park type thing, very touristy and expensive. The busses are an hour apart, so I did a quick walk around and eagerly awaited the next bus back. I could have gone on to visit St Ives but I was feeling pretty lethargic, I think the sun and sunburn from yesterday knocked me around. I went back into town, had some lunch and went back to my room for a lie down. Ah yes and sunburn on the sunburn. I am really going to have to get a hat.
Thursday brought yet another lovely day and Harry came to pick me up at 9.30. There was a Calfornian mum and her son and a German couple. All lovely people. Harry is a local Cornishman and his plan is no plan for the tours. My sort of person. He loves to tell tall tales and poor jokes as he rambles through the countryside and takes you to the off beat and off the beaten track places. We visited old stone circles, a celtic wishing well .. and yes I made a wish .. you had to dip cloth , well a tissue had to do, into the water, rub it over your face, make a wish and tie the cloth onto the tree hanging over the water. This has been going on since time immortal, something like the 850's, an old uncovered burial mound, old disused tin mines, a lovely pub lunch and then a sit and yak on stunning cliffs overlooking the ocean.
I got Harry to drop me off in town. I havent done any washing on this trip and my clothes were getting a 'little ripe' shall we say. Now I had two choices, spend the rest of the afternoon down the laundromat or buy some new stuff. No points for guessing which one I chose. I came back to my room, had a shower and changed. I tell you, I felt pretty damn glamorous in my new tshirt and zip up jumper, oh and the sunburn on the sunburn on the sunburn. My forehead is pretty sore .. yes, I really am going to get a hat and sunscreen. It seems absolutely silly to be carting around my wool jacket, gloves, beanie and cashmere scarf and yet a week ago I couldn't go outside without them.
After the Shetlands and now Cornwall I am really starting to relax and can feel all the tension of the last few months just disappear. Every night here I just went and sat down at the esplanade and just watched the world go by and my mind was a wonderful blank. Them there is magic in these Celtic places and a wonderful magic it is too.
Its back to London on Friday for Kev's Birthday Bash. I'm really looking forward to it. All this country air and relaxing has had me in bed early most nights, which has been excellent, but a good all nighter sounds like fun.
PS. I am having heaps of problems getting all the pics in .. they are in my main album which is linked from here. Will try again another day