Sunday, 9 June 2013

Chapter Seventy Four

The weather is still good at the moment so on Sunday (26th May) we decided to go walking on Bodmin Moor. It is very beautiful up there and reminded us of the Coast to Coast walk we did on the Yorkshire Moors.
We started at the little village of St Breward and and headed off to Brown Willy. This is the highest point of Cornwall and well worth climbing up to. There is a fairly longish walk across the moor which goes past King Arthurs Hall. This is an enclosed neolithic area which must have been a meeting place at one time. A fascinating place.

It is very bleak up there as regards seeing anything human, but very rich in its nature and wildlife. We found old farm buildings and even buildings still in use, but very little of humankind. This all changed when we started the climb up through the rocks to the trig point.
More and more people started to appear until the place was beginning to resemble 'Piccadilly Circus'. By the time we got to the top and had a good look around...all became clear. Down below us on the other side of the hill was a footpath leading to a road and a carpark.
We preferred our way of getting there though.
On our way we had crossed a couple of small rivers; deep flowing water as clear as crystal; walked through a small secret wood; and also passed a couple of very old farm buildings which had been turned into isolated holiday cottages...we would have seen none of this if we had driven up by car and just walked up the footpath.
We had to laugh though on top of Brown Willy. We stopped up there for our sandwiches and flasks. We decided to eat at the highest point as normal. We don't like to eat and then carry on climbing...sooner rest and eat before climbing back downwards.

The highest point of any of these places is normally the trig point. This time somebody had built a cairn beside the trig point...and they made it a good foot taller. Then to cap it all...somebody put a skull on top of it. Great fun and a good laugh.

Sadly there was also evidence of the scale of the bad winter and bitter cold spring that we have had. In several places we found the remains of sheep that must have been caught out on the moors when it snowed late this year. Some groups still looked as if they had died huddled together in the blizzards. Very sad.
We then climbed back down and walked across and up onto a place called Rough Tor. This place has been given to the nation as a living memorial to men of the 45th Wessex Regiment who fought across Europe from Normandy to Berlin.

It was quite a long walk back to the car and we were tired when we got there. Thank goodness the next day was the Spring Bank Holiday because we slept for twelve hours that night.
The Monday showed a complete 180 degree turn in the weather. Iwas on duty at the lookout with Bob and the weather closed in completely. Very wet and very windy...it teemed down. I'm glad we walked yesterday.
I have got Tuesday off this week as my day off so I don't go back uintil Wednesday...then next week we are on a weeks holidays of our own.
We also made our first tentative steps into the world of skypeing and made our first call to Katrina, Kevin , and Oscar. Great fun although Oscar was a little bit surprised to see 'Grandma and Grandpa' on the telly.
I kept up with Fiona on facebook all this week while she and Woody have been up on Skye. They never cease to amaze me. Woody took part in another marathon up there and completed it in a personal best time. It certainly impresses me.
Fiona also posted several pictures of herself and Woody during the week. In one of them she is dressed in dungarees...and milking a cow. She was fixing the cups to the cows teats and working happily in the milking parlour. That really impressed me.
They also climbed a 'munro', which I have always wanted to do, plus she ate mussels and oysters which I have NEVER wanted to do. Fair play though... all the kids seem to give things a go...and it impresses the life out of me.
Our holiday started on a very hot and sweltering day on the Saturday afternoon (1st June) and continued that way for the whole week. It has been absolutely brilliant and we have really been very idle. I think we both needed it.Gary and Jeanette have gone on holiday to France for a couple of weeks so we are looking after their place. Most important of all; we are looking after 'Magic'. A black cat who is lovely. I get to feed him twice a day...he graciously allows me to so long as I remain his humble servant and 'know my place'.
We also had these great plans to go walking and visit a few places. We didn't do any of that much at all.
I just had to publish this picture for you to see. A really nice chap on my delivery has prepared a mass of wood ready for next winter. This is the wood stack he made which will stay dry and ready for the winter months. Brilliant isn't it.


Sunday 2cnd.
                     I went to the lookout for a duty watch with Bob...Linda went to her allotment. It looks so professional up there; she really is a wonder. All is laid out and there is stuff growing everywhere. Most impressive. I helped out by filling her water butt for her...that was enough for me.
Monday 3rd.
                   Linda and I spent 45 minutes walking around the village delivering the Roseland Magazine. That was fun, and by 10-30m we were sitting on the beach at Towan and getting burnt by the sun. Later that afternoon we cycled across to St Michael Penkevil to see the old ferry place opposite Malpas. Great fun and we saw a baby badger waddling along the road. We also saw Brian who has not been well. He had a bit of a stroke but is getting about again. A lovely man...glad he's looking and feeling better.
Tuesday 4th.
                   Linda had an appointment with the dentist at Tregony before once more heading up to the allotment. We then seemed to spend the rest of the day lying out in the garden in the sun loungers.
Wednesday 5th.
                         I got some work done with my writing and sent off several pieces for competitions. Linda, needless to say spent the morning up at the allotment. She has the garden looking lovely and the allotment is all she has to use her energy on at the moment. We had a meeting at the NCI this evening that went well.
Thursday 6th.
                     Today we went into Truro. There was an exhibition of aircraft in Lemon Quay. We got to see a replica of the Spitfire flown by 'Johnnie' Johnson during the Battle of Britain. There was also the little plane that was buiklt by pupils at a Truro school and then flown over Truro some forty years ago. There was also a replica of the plane that some people still think of as the first 'heavier than air' aircraft to fly under its own power. This was by a cornish chap who flew his plane several months before the Wright Brothers...but never recorded much about it. A good day out though. I also got a haircut and Linda got some shopping. We then both bought the weeks shopping before returning back to the garden again.
Friday 7th.
                 We spent today at the Royal Cornwall Show up near Wadebridge. A huge event and very good to see. A scorching hot day and we enjoyed ourselves although we both ended up with headaches. Hard to believe that last year it was cancelled in parts because of the bad storms and blizzards and the like. We had a good day but were glad to get back home.
Saturday 8th.
                   Another day of not much done at all. We had decided to go form a good walk but were awoken at 06-00 to an almighty thunderstorm of ferocious rain and bleakness. We cancelled the walk and an hour later the sun came out. We nipped across to Veryan before going to Carne Beach. Linda was after more driftwood and I collected up any plastic junk and glass bottles for the re-cycling.
We had such a good time that, after going home for breakfast, we headed back out to the beach again and loafed around there for six hours.  Great fun.
Sunday 9th.
                  Once again Linda has gone up to the allotment. She enjoys the therapy of it and it keeps her focussed on things other than her work. I have managed to catch up with my blog and such like. I have been sending in two pieces of work a week now to the Western Morning News for a couple of months. Thirty pieces now and all published. Another thirty pieces and I will try and put the lot into a book.
I pick up my van this evening for work tomorrow. At the same time, Linda and I are going to the lookout so that Linda can take a couple of photos of me for the Courier magazine. They want some 'action' pictures for a small feature they are doing on me. Should be a laugh.




Thursday, 6 June 2013

Chapter Seventy Three

We seemed to have the very last of the extreme bad weather in the west country just before Lucy and Jon came down. Snow fell on various parts of the country including near us. Bodmin Moor saw some snow , as did parts of Devon. We even had a snow shower down with us for a few moments but nothing settled. It was in the rain more than anything else.
Not what you really expect for the middle of May!!!
Thursday the 16th was an unusual day though in more ways than one. The county awoke to frost, which was followed by hail and a light dusting of snow which promptly faded away during the day. It was lovely though were we were and this continued throughout the day. Very localised though. It got very dark at St Mawes and finally rained a bit over the lunchtime. I got home (10 miles away) to find it had been lovely all day. In fact it was so dry I was able to mow the lawns. Linda was at work just the other side of Truro (also 10 miles away) and it had rained and drizzled for most of the day.
Those distances are as the crow flies...but still very odd.
Linda went to bed without waking me as I had an early sleep that evening. I got up at 22-45 and headed off to St Austell.
Yay...I went to collect Lucy and Jon from the train. They are down with us for a long weekend and we are looking forward to having them with us. Their train came in at 23-35 and I got them safely home by just after midnight.
Linda and I both had to work on the Friday but then we to, would have the weekend off. I have the Monday as well.
Incredibly the weather finally took an almighty turn for the better and we had a great few days.
I nipped home on the Friday and took both of them over to St Mawes. I was able to get them into the castle for a visit while I carried on with my delivery. We then met up in the Rising Sun and had a really good catch up together.

The following day, Linda had to go up and put a full day in at the allotment. Its not been easy with this spring and she wanted to make the most of the good weather.
I did take the two of them down to the Coastwatch Station to see were I work. Really proud of being there and delighted with my Radio qualification I have just received. We then left there and I drove onto the King Harry and crossed over.

This made it easier to get down onto the Lizard and we had a walk down to the old lifeboat station. The good news down there is that its closed off at the moment because some Choughs are nesting in the old building. It's good to see them flourishing once more down here.
We had a look out across the bay at the rocks sticking up out of the sea...one of which is called 'MULVIN'. I still can't get over that or even find out why it is called that. Very odd.

From here I took them both to St Michaels Mount. Although closed on a Saturday I thought we could have walked across. Sadly the tide was in and there are no boats on a Saturday when the National Trust bit is shut.
 The girl in this picture was really pretty, but when she bent her head down like that to look at her phone she gave a perfect image of 'Cousin It'.
We didn't waste the time however and had a couple of pints in the pub in Marazion as we looked across. Parking was almost free as I paid my £4-20 in the machine; took my ticket; and then performed the old Mulvin trick of checking the 'change slot'. The machine doesn't give change but the slot is there in case a coin doesn't work and slips through. I found £2-20 inside it and was well pleased.
That evening we got the old BBQ out and had a barbie in the back garden. A wonderful meal if I may say so.

Sunday we drove up to Padstow and had a good old walk around up there. We even paddled in the sea. I led a small expedition of the four of us to a beach with some interesting caves I knew. I thought this would be interesting and fun. Two miles on and at the end of a caveless beach I finally admitted I may have gone to the wrong beach.
'Pardon me and my mistake!'
Even my apology didn't seem to carry much weight. I was forgiven though when we returned back to Padstow and I plied them all with Fish and Chips and a couple of beers. I wasn't so much forgiven for this magnanimous gesture...as for taking a full hit from some bloody seagull that decided to use me as a toilet. Charming.

All to soon it was Monday and the two of them had to return to London. I hated saying goodbye, but at least we know they will be down again at some point. We did have lunch in Mevagissey before they left and a little walk around as well so that was nice.
It was a lovely weekend though and we enjoyed ourselves very much.
The next week went well and I had fun at work. Good weather all week and a fairly easy week of it with the mail.