St Ives was as lovely as ever.
Visiting so early in the year meant it was much quieter than in the high season. We stayed in the same gorgeous flat we’d been to in 2004 and 2005. Leo has long held that he is going to buy it when he grows up. The window makes you feel like you’re right out in the world.
We did a circular walk of about five miles to the church at Lelant.
When I was a child, one of the things I did with my dad was to go for long country walks to various churches in
We were blown away (not literally, though it was gusty!) by the beautiful views as we walked along. I fell in love with the houses huddled against the cliff at Hawk’s Point. We saw a kestrel on the way back. We were alongside the railway line for most of this walk. Anyone who has ever been to St Ives and not arrived by train has really missed something. I think it’s just about the most beautiful train journey I know.
Another good walk was up to Knill’s Monument. The rhododendron bushes are all being destroyed in an attempt to control Sudden Oak Death fungus. This was a bit sad but, luckily for us, the workmen doing that job were having their lunch break at the monument. They were able to confirm that the birds we had spotted were buzzards and they showed us where to spot St Michael’s Mount on the horizon.
It was Leo’s 8th birthday while we were there. I find it rather astonishing that he has got to such an advanced age already! He got a toy alethiometer, a spyglass in little wooden box and a very dinky little portable DVD player. Pearlie gave him a DVD of Ice Age, which they watched together on the train home.
It was a trip that was very heavy on reading (and pasties, as my waistline demonstrates) and I’m not sure if I can remember all the books that were read. Pearlie read two more books in the Ally’s World books she’s been enjoying, as well as a Jacqueline Wilson. Leo read an Alistair Fury book and a new Jamie Rix, Grizzly Tales book. Dani finished a book all about the Natural History Museum, called Dry Store Room No. 1 by Richard Fortey. She also borrowed a book from the local library about communities in Penwith in the twentieth century. I read a Ruth Rendell (that Pearlie and Leo gave me for Mothers’ Day) then wolfed down a Jeanette Winterson called The Stone Gods that I had somehow missed. By the last day I was without book and treated myself to The Accidental by Ali Smith, which I’ve just finished.
One of the most enjoyable things we did was to hide some treasure for cousins who are visiting St Ives next month. I can say no more, but it was good fun and I hope it remains undisturbed until they get there!Dani and the kids had a good swim at the local pool (I had managed to cut my leg on a stick, so didn't go in) and we ate lots of ice-cream most days. Leo discovered that he loved apple, pear and custard pasties. Pearlie got a nice pair of sandals that should last the summer. Oh, and we travelled very cheaply. It cost just £85.80 for all four of us to get to St Ives and back. This was done by using family railcard and single tickets. The kids travelled home today for £3.50 each! Journeys were simple and we made all connections, in spite of the fact that most of the underground was closed today.
Here's a few more photos to give you a flavour of the trip