Cornwall, You Had Me at Hello

I am sitting in Barcelona now, thinking back about the experiences I just had in Cornwall. A couple of years back I met my hosts, Peter and Sue, on a cruise, and though we had wanted to meet up again,  it seemed as if we had just missed seeing each other (by days sometimes), as our paths failed to cross. When I had to change my travel plans so as not to overstay my tourist visa in Europe before I go home in July, a few days in England were in order.  Peter and Sue were home, and lo and behold, there I was, hanging out in their cottage.  Here it is.

But with Peter and Sue, time at home is what happens between everything else. Peter knows every nook and cranny of Cornwall, and a car ride with him turns into a history lesson and a highlights reel of the beauty of this region. Sue  and their dogs took me out on a two hour walk over the fields, beaches and clifftops, with the promise of excellent coffee at the end. Here we are, properly caffeinated.

Now normally after seven miles, one would think a non-strenuous afternoon would be in order, but not chez Sue and Peter.  Another walk took us to a place called the Hidden Hut, a modest—well, hut— overlooking a beach, where a local chef turns out four or five soups and all sorts of yummy desserts for anyone who knows where to look and doesn’t mind the short trek to get there.

is it time to rest yet?  Nope.  Home for a few minutes, then off to Caerhays castle, a favorite of Prince Charles,  to see the extensive gardens with  azaleas, rhododendrons, and other flowers in full bloom.

And throughout, the hospitality was extraordinary, not just from Sue, who fed me well and copiously, and Peter, who plied me with wine and excellent coffee, but from all the friends of theirs I met, and even a few waving and smiling strangers.

When I told Peter I had been to Cornwall before, and rattled off what I had seen, he said, “oh good!  Sue and I were worried you might want to go see those things.” Just as when people come to San Diego, if they really want to do the Top 5, that’s okay, but I’d really so much rather show them the hidden gems.  I had two days of those, and my heart is happy. Cornwall, I’m yours.