Tuesday, 4 November 2014

A trip to Penberth

Fishing boats drawn up out of the water at Penberth

The autumn mists wrapped Cornwall in warm liquid blanket for days towards the end of October in a haunted half light. It was on such a day that we set off for a picnic eastwards towards Rinsey and just a quickly turned around again as the fog thickened towards Rosudgeon. And so instead we turned westwards away from the fog bank toward Land's End in the hope of dropping down below the clouds.

The road stops just short of the Cove or to be precise the signs direct you to "No cars beyond this point" and so we parked beside the stream that gurgles down passed the thatched cottages and followed the mossy tarmac down to Penberth Cove.

We finally crossed a "poo sticks" type of bridge and found the cove just as we remembered it and probably just as it had always been - a steep granite slipway topped by a vast Capstan with a gaggle of fishing boats pulled up out of the sea. The ropes and crab pots of the fishing trips lay casually piled around sure in the knowledge that they were safe from prying fingers in this half forgotten place from another era.

Crab pots stacked under the capstan

We chose just the right bolder to one side of the slipway and comfortably began the autumn picnic ritual of unpacking freshly made bacon sandwiches and pouring hot sweet tea from the capacious flask that is a veteran of so many picnics. And so we sat in this timeless place, with the steep valley sides carpeted with bronzing bracken and the sea churning and tossing relentlessly about the rocks that frame the cove.

The timeless scene at Penberth Cove

All too soon it was time to go

All too soon it was time to go and follow the stream back out of the cove and back to our waiting car with a little memory tucked away of a few hours stolen from the mist in a quiet fishing Cove. It really is a cove where time, to quote the cliche really "has stood still."