Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Holiday Part Deux - Gigspanner Day

Friday in Rame is Gigspanner Day - perhaps my host is right - it is becoming a small tradition for a party of friends to assemble for the annual Gigspanner gig in Kingsand Village Hall. The day started with a cracking breakfast of everything, at nearly lunch time. Eight hours sleep following the excess of the previous day was rejuvenating and not being woken up at stupid o'clock by Bath's seagull population squabbling over the last of the pub goers suppers was a relief. During breakfast the day was discussed and a walk proposed. In various states of wellness; hang-over, heavy cold and creeking limbs we found ourselves slowly working our way up the steepest part of the climb to the view point at the top of Maker Lane.

Pausing for long moments at gates on the way ostensibly to gasp at the views and in my case catching a breather, we snapped away with our digitals.

The view from the top was, as ever, breathtaking. Despite the slight haze all the landmarks, from St Austell's Hensbarrow Beacon, through Bodmin Moor and Carodan Hill and up the Tamar valley to Dartmoor's Tors, could be seen.
From the top of Maker Lane we crossed the road and headed over the top of Maker Heights past the Victorian Barracks (now an arts comunity) and turned nort-east towards Maker Church. 

More later...

Sunday, 15 May 2011

What I did on my holidays!! Part 1 (Coming to you direct from Millbrooker Towers)

It's now the start of the final (non-traveling) day with The Millbrooker, Mrs The Millbrooker and  and other guests at Millbrooker Towers. I had intended to take advantage of their hospitality for just Friday to Sunday in order to enjoy the music and performance of Peter Knight's Gigspanner at a local village hall but since the Wreckers Morris were appearing I had been persuaded (not hard) to arrive on Thursday. The Morris was great fun but I wasn't feeling 100% by 8 o'clock Thursday - a long day.
Thursday actually started badly; on Wednesday. It had probably been one of the worst weeks for a long time and only 3 days! I finally got to sleep early Thursday morning and the alarm clock was set for 06:15. As usual nothing was packed ready so I had all that to do before getting the usually late 08:57 Penzance train down to Plymouth. As usual it was announced on Bath Spa Platform 1 as running 8 minutes late but managed to arrive on time - go figure!! The run down on the train was pretty straight forward until Nailsea and Backwell where we were stopped. The announcement from the Train Manager sent an almost silent groan through the carriage - 'The train is being held here due to a vehicle striking a bridge' then a few minutes later 'The driver has has been allowed to to take the train on at reduced speed'. By Taunton we were only eight minutes late, much of which was made up caning it up Whiteball. The rest of the run was uneventful with my ears full of Black Sabbath and passed the time playing Solitaire on my phone. I do believe I am becoming blazĂ© about one of the most spectacular engineering achievements in Britain, the Brunel masterpiece between Exeter and Plymouth, because a barely gave it a glance.
Plymouth was sunny and as I walked down Armada Way, I realised that I had left my baseball cap at home. I would either have to squint in the sun for 4 days or buy one then and there. Quicksilver or whatever had not much with a big logo on it - I don't like paying for someone to advertise on me - so across the road to BHS for me. They were running a 20% off day so a quite simple summer sun cap for just over £6 was perfect.
Off now to walk down to the Admiral's Hard for the Cremyll Ferry. I got as far as the Taxi Rank and shelled out a fiver for the privilege of not walking down there. 10 minutes to wait for the boat, then across the Tamar to the first pint in Cornwall.
The Edgcumbe Arms served me a fine pint of Proper Job which at only just after midday went down with unhealthy haste while waiting for Sausage and Mash and pint of Tribute. It was blowy and the sun was out so after lunch I found a corner in the lee of an old building by the quay and waited for the bus to Millbrook.
Off to Millbrook on the bus by way of Maker Church and the magnificent view up the Tamar to the Saltash bridges, then down into Millbrook village. By quarter past two I was sat on a bar stool in the Devon and Cornwall Inn enjoying a fine pint of Timothy Taylor's Landlord and the company of budding mathematician Emma behind the bar. It was quiet and Russell was scurrying around preparing for the evenings jollity. a couple of pints later I strolled round the corner to check for undelivered texts.
There a few corners of Millbrook where the finger of Vodafone reaches and these are spots where incoming texts arrive. As I turned back to the pub the phone sprang to life and found that in anticipation of my arrival The Millbrooker had alerted me to the fact that I would find him 'on the patio'. Bidding goodbye to Emma I made my way to Millbrooker Towers. Following Kedgeree 'knocked up' by The Millbrooker he donned his 'tatters' we all went of down to West Street where the Morris was to take  place outside the D&C. It was a wonderful evening and although I was completely beered out and knackered managed to develop a face strain from so much smiling. A wonderful antidote to what I'd left behind in Bath.
The Millbrookers blog of the entertainment is here.