Oct 03 2012

Rescued by 5 Pilchards

Got blown into the side of my left boot yesterday .. strong side winds .. with the result, a bruised sore tendon and a bit of a limp. I can appreciate how Pip must have felt now. Still, will soldier on. To Turbos Cafe at Kennack cove for breakfast (absolutely nothing doing at the previous stop in Cadgwith .. not until 11am. Can’t hang around till then. So jelly beans till Kennack). The old lady who cooked me my fry up asked what I was writing – was I documenting all the wildlife, the local flora and fauna along my way? I felt somewhat inadequate – No, simply my silly thoughts and a few casual observations.
The quality of light and the 180 degree seascape at Blackhead was striking, the emptiness of the view breathtaking. No headlands to aim for.
Slippery ups and downs to Coverack with the option of an inland route (still classified as ‘coast path’ that edges around a scupture garden, so not cheating – the ‘coastal’ coast path sounded treacherous by all accounts. Glad I didn’t take it. Passed Porthoustock, taking a very tedious quarry path and roads, and then wildly lost just a mile from Porthallow, by which time I was wet, tired and miserable once I’d realised my wrong turn. Advised to take a short cut across some fields, past a tree and through a kissing gate, onto another pathway to the village – sounded easy. Perhaps it was my fatigue that got me jumping over a hedge (no gate) and into an area of thick thorn and bracken. And I continued .. following a suspect trail – until I came to a cliff edge from where I could see the bay and the coastal village. Decided (desperately) that I couldn’t go back and, looking up at an almost vertical overgrown cliff, that I would go on to the top – The only way is UP (baby!), and up I went, hanging onto any small trees for dear life, wet, no longer miserable, but pumped with adrenalin. And I made it. At the top – a magnificent path with a gate .. towards the Five Pilchards Inn. Decided during my ascent that I had earned a stay in a B&B, if anyone would agree to put me up looking as wretched as I did. More than that (I did look a sight) I was bought a drink by some kindly day walkers, who could appreciate my plight. And the room at the pub and their hospitality was sublime! Met with walking buddy Paul for a good feed, then excused myself early to retire to my dry, comfy bed.

Funny how when traveling solo, emotions can go from abject misery (usually related to tiredness), disbelief (lost?), through fear (I hope the roots of this tree are well anchored!) and onto sheer joy – all in half an hour. The highs and lows are extreme – a reflection of the topography!

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