The Coastal Path

Most people reading this will know that I have recently returned from a Sabbatical break.  A major part of it was spent in Cornwall, walking on the coastal path.  It was a great time, and I’m very grateful to have been able to do it – I thought I should tell you how it went.

Well, most importantly, I survived without twisting an ankle or falling off a cliff.  And as I stayed with family – Kristina’s sister and her husband – I was lucky enough to be able to do my walking in a civilised way.  There wasn’t a tent or campfire stove in sight.  Instead I drove back to the house each evening for a hot meal and a comfortable bed! 

I was away in Cornwall for four weeks altogether, and in that time I covered quite a bit of the path between Helston and St Ives – but far from every mile!  I took in lots of the Lizard.  And quite a bit of the far west – the area around  Land’s End and Cape Cornwall.

The coastal path was beautiful: it runs for miles along cliffs – sometimes topped with open moors, other times with dense growth.  Usually I’d see rugged landscape on one side and waves washing against rocks on the other.  And then there were the coves which the path dipped down to – Porth Chapel might be a contender for ‘heaven on earth’; I spent half an hour there with not another soul in sight.

I saw seals by the dozen – a lizard, a slowworm and, for the first time in my life, a wild adder.  Bird watchers would have loved it – larches, martins, and guillemots amongst the more appealing.  And lest I forget, I shared lunch with what must be the tamest robin in England. 

I returned to Holy Trinity a couple of weeks ago, relaxed and refreshed - and happy to be back.  Hopefully the experience and benefit of my time in Cornwall will stay with me as I settle back into daily life!

John