I’ve wanted live here since I was maybe 17.
Even back then I knew the downsides.
When you live on the edge you can see for miles.
That’s an amazing thing.
But also, when you Iive on the edge you have to cover similar ground every time you go anywhere.
Now that applies to the edge, wherever it may be.
But on this particular edge you also have to contend with the wind. Crazy, destructive, penetrating wind, that has gathered strength on its journey of thousands of miles across the sea.
And the mist.
Mizzle. Fog. Mist. Call it what you like, it’s misty down this end more often than up country. More often than in Penzance even.
But what the hell.
This is a special place.
I was right to set my sights on it long before I understood many of the idiosyncrasies that make the magic of the far end of Britain.
After more than three decades of spending lots of time in West Penwith, I now live here full time and I couldn’t be happier – how lucky is that?
Here’s a particularly good day in the life of…
I’m not proud to say I woke somewhat philogrobolised from the exuberance of the night before.
But by 10.30 we were on the road, a short drive over to Breage for a banter with our lovely artist friend Rachel Jeffery. Not only does Rachel produce inspiring work, with her husband she also owns the gorgeous cottage Trevena Cross Barn, behind the huge and exciting Trevena Cross Nurseries on the A394 between Penzance and Helston.
It always leaves my brain sparking with renewed energy when I’ve spent time with creative people. Today I came away with my note book filled with names to research that included houses on the Isle of Skye, artists and a breeder of standard poodles!
From Trevena Cross we headed west towards Penzance, intent on a treat for lunch.
We stopped at the stunning Tremenheere Sculpture Gardens. It was our first visit since our lovely friends Justin and Miki left from running the show some time back.
And we were delighted.
Apart from being greeted by the mind bending Restless Temple installation as you drive up towards the gardens, and the Skip of Light that we parked the car by, the restaurant exceeded expectations. We enjoyed a flavour filled Bomb the Base (bouillabaisse) that was packed with a punch, as well as a great sea food feast, and the best Croque Monsieur this side of the Channel, its French mustard lending it that flavour that oozes France.
This was all a bit involved and full on after a good night, so, replete, we slipped home to Archavon to light the fire and gently allow our eyelids to rest while the sofas enveloped us for an hour or so.
Our siesta couldn’t run on though.
Tonight was film night.
Usually St Just has a monthly film night. It’s a special occasion in the Sunday School alongside the massive chapel that dominates the north of our town.
But in February it’s usurped by a weekly event at no less prestigious location than the WI hall!
Tonight we watched the dark, sinister Blancanieves – blimey, if you thought Snow White has a few thought provoking overtones, you should watch this 2012 beauty from Spain. Silent, mono and stunning.
Being a Lafrowda event there was cake. Good cake. And wine. And plenty of good people. Seated in a most convivial cabaret style. But it was the dogs quietly roaming the floor of our cinema that most captivated me.
Now that should have been enough of a day for anyone. Especially as I haven’t even mentioned the dog walks.
On our way home from the WI we heard the distinctive tones of Royston, belting out from The Star.
Royston has been singing since he was 16, and that must mean that he has performed for five decades.
Recently he has been joined by a special lead guitarist. I don’t know his name yet, but he’s know to have played with some big names over the years and now chooses to delight the crowds in The Star instead of a packed out O2 Arena.
Good for him!
Any night in The Star is an event, and tonight was the best this year so far.
After a head full of classics I staggered out onto Fore Street into fog so thick I could hardly see the square before me.
Typical St Just. Tumble weed blowing down the empty street, while in several of its pubs there was a crowd of lucky, excited people having a great night of music.
How lucky are we? Beyond measure.
Then Sunday morning, well what do you expect when you’re in the way to church – a dung sale!