Thursday, November 07, 2019

MENU's UK Adventure 12. From Torquay to Plymouth, then to Mevagissey in Cornwall

On our way from Torquay, heading for our AirBnB at Mevagissey in Cornwall, we drove to Plymouth. We wanted to see the famous Hoe where Sir Walter Raleigh was said to have played bowls in 1588, while waiting for the tide to change, before going off to fight the Spanish Armada and from where the Pilgrim Fathers left for America on the 6th September 1620. We were rather shocked at the lack of signage and asked a passing gentleman if we were indeed on the Hoe? Seems we asked exactly the right person. He apologised and said they were replacing all the signage because next year will be the 400th anniversary of the Pilgrim Fathers and there will be a huge celebration. (Damn, we were a year early!) Which is why there is also a lot of building work going on in the area. Plymouth Hoe is the hill in front and the Pilgrim’s Steps are on the right in front of the tall white building
A view of the headland across the bay from the steps
The maritime museum and the tourist board are on this dockside
A really impressive sculpture on the front, known as the Leviathan, by Brian Fell
The gull on the lamp is real, although it looks as though it could be part of the exhibit
We had a round route walk on the Hoe, up Lambay hill
past the Royal Citadel fort, barracks of the 29th Commando Regiment of the Royal Artillery
My father taught me never to point a gun at anyone! Guards at the gate
The impressive gate reminded us a little of our own Cape Town Castle
The Commando Memorial
Oh, how we wished we had put more money on the parking
We were now running a little late and had to miss tasting the gin
One of the old historic Plymouth streets, full of characterful Inns
We bet that they have seen many sailors celebrating their shore leave
As we reached Mevagissey, the sun came out and we found our AirBnB very easily,
high on the hill overlooking the town
Two rooms, one a bedroom and a sitting room with French doors to the outside
The other a kitchen/diner
The spacious garden and, yes, we did get to sit out
Our apartment on the ground floor
We decided to walk down to the village the next morning;
it has the narrow streets characteristic of many Cornish seaside towns
Washing has to hang outside on the street as few houses in the village have gardens
There is lots of shopping for the tourists
A sign that someone is getting old..er
You can hardly see the Fountain Inn for the cascades of creepers and hanging baskets
The harbour
An old Cornish Crabber. Many fishing boats in Cornwall and Brittany
have "legs" to stop them falling over when the tide is out
Why not just fix them? Or update them?
Wow, a superb museum filled with lots of bygones from people who have lived in the area
Admission is free but, of course, we gave a donation
These places are like gold and must be supported
Ma and Pa in front of the kitchen range. Lynne remembers baby chairs like those!
The Museum was the premises of a ship repairer in earlier times. This is the foreman’s office
with the old furniture, tools and pictures that he would have had on the walls and treasured
Out of the water for repairs. There is still a ship repair business at the waterside
We almost got a tan in the lovely sunshine on the jetty
Some pleasure boats, as well as working boats
A view from the harbour of the nearby cliffs and farmland
Should we have fish and chips? Tempted by the scallops...
Good name for No. 57!
We settled for some pasties from Martins the Bakers. Not great; heavy pastry and rather tasteless. Sadly, nothing like those Lynne remembers from the Rock Bakery in Padstow and John remembers from previous visits to Penzance and Mousehole. Should have had the scallops or a crab sandwich. But they were twice the price of those in Scotland
We had been invited for dinner with friends who live near Lostwithiel. Lynne and friends Navin and Nick both owned flats in the same house in Broadhurst Gardens in West Hampstead in London for over 20 years. Navin and Nick still have their flat but live down in Cornwall. They have the most beautiful manor house
Nick came and fetched us; it is quite a way to their house, deep in the countryside, down small winding lanes with high hedgerows. We might never have found it, even with our SatNav
A long table had been set for dinner with several friends
Dinner was a delicious Indian curry with basmati rice
Samoosas and flat bread and a dip
The slow cooked chicken curry
Dhal
And two puddings, a crème brulée topped with berries
and a rich white chocolate cheesecake brought by one of the guests 
We sat after dinner in the sitting room and relaxed with more wine,
then took a taxi back to Mevagissey at midnight after a lovely evening

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