Wild West

Thursday, January 13th, 2005

Have spent the last few days in a ridiculously idyllic former miner's cottage on the edge of a steep valley in the very westernmost part of Cornwall. For those who know the area, we're by the Cot Valley within walking distance of Cape Cornwall. The cottage is owned by the National Trust (we make an exception from our dislike of them for their holiday cottages) and is at the top of a steep slope, with parking some way down it. The garden stops suddenly at a steep drop, making sleepwalking suicidal.

The only disadvantage is that we can't get reception on the laptop's mobile internet card from anywhere in the cottage or its grounds, so we are driving off to lay-bys in the countryside every day to check emails and do things like make this post.

Anyway, as ever, here are some pix.

Day One

Road to nowhere
Road to nowhere
At the foot of the Cot Valley is Porthnanven, a stony beach with remnants of the tin industry – and a road that stops abruptly.

Stagnant green water fills a circular mining relic
Mint polo
Stagnant green water fills this mining relic. We wondered if it was bottomless – it turned out to be only a couple of inches deep.

Anarchist graffito
Anarchist graffito
The country's most westernmost graffiti? Indymedia.org had come to visit – and left its calling card on the ruins' walls.

Rocks and breakers at Cape Cornwall
At Cape Cornwall
Down in Priest's Cove at Cape Cornwall there is nothing to protect you from waves that have travelled the width of the Atlantic.

Tidal bathing pool
Chilly dip
Priest's Cove features a bathing pool that fills up each time the tide comes in. A bit too cold to be fun at this time of year…

Large waves rolling in
The waves
There were times at Cape Cornwall, looking at the size of the breakers rolling in, that I couldn't help but think of the tsunami disaster and marvel at the power of the sea.

Day Two

Aircraft takes off into setting sun
Sunset take-off
In the search for internet access we parked by Land's End aerodrome, where sight-seeing flights took off into the evening sun.

Burned-out car
Just like home
A burned-out vehicle in the carpark for Chapel Carn Brea was a reminder that some things are not unique to living in the city.

Sunset over Land's End
Sunset over Land's End
Chapel Carn Brea is England's most westerly hill – next stop after this sunset is the United States…

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I'm Andy Darley. Sometimes I want to say things. This is where I do it.