|Sunday 23 March 2008|
|Foul weather kept us indoors for most of the
morning. Finally, feeling penned up and stuffy, I ventured out to the
top of the hill behind the cottage.
I climbed the steep bridle path, pushing hard against the wind. As I rose so did the wind speed. Right at the top is the remains of a quarry. This means it's a big pool of water. This one has all the charm of a tarn. There were even a couple of guys fishing it. How do fish get to such place?
I took a few photos and managed to keep my glasses on my head just. The temperature is supposed to be 9° but the wind dragged it down to about 1! It was a lot easier walking back down, wind assisted AND downhill. On the way down, and in the department labelled 'Odd Things Seen Out Walking', I spotted a bunny in a shopping bag wedged in some rocks. Actually all I saw was its ears and the top of its head. Very odd.
Back at the cottage I assured Mirinda that the weather was indeed improving and we should go out. It was decided we'd try Falmouth. That way, if the weather did turn worse, we could always go somewhere dry. Like a pub.
We reached Falmouth very quickly as it's only seven miles from the cottage and parked in the station car park on Avenue Road. We walked down to the dock area which has been done up and looks a little like Darling Harbour or like a little Darling Harbour. It was very windy and lunchtime so we decided to pop into Pizza Express to find shelter and pizza. We certainly found both.
After eating pizza, we wandered down Falmouth high street, dodging cars on what should be a pedestrianised strip of one way road. It was all a bit glum, mainly populated by high street chain shops with little of interest. The second hand bookshop which held a lot of interest was, unfortunately, closed. One of Falmouth's great claims to fame is the fact that in 1917, the great spy Mata Hari was detained on a liner that had docked here. She was then sent to France to be tried and subsequently executed.
We wandered back to the dock area then decided to visit Pendennis Castle.
What a difference. A mile and a half away onto the headland is one of Henry VIII's coastal defence castles. It is set in some lovely open land with wide ranging views of the river and the sea.
Back in the day, Henry was concerned with an attack from the French and so set about building coastal defences all along the southern coastline of Britain. These castles were very impressive and managed to frighten off the French so they never attacked. Two of the finest of these castles are Pendennis and St Mawes which stand opposite each other across the mouth of the river Fal.
Building started in 1540 and they were completed in around 1545. Over the centuries Pendennis has seen many changes as it was continually used for coastal defence up until 1956 when its battery was dismantled.
We wandered inside and up Henry's castle still largely as it was 500 years ago. The views from the top are fantastic, though still pretty windy.
I had a long friendly chat with Amanda in the gift shop and we collected Sidney for the trip back to the cottage. Here I was entertained by Mirinda on her guitar.
Afterwards we watched a lamentable movie called The One with Jet Li.