Happy spring.... As is typical for the past year, I figure the change of seasons is a friendly reminder that I need to blog about Christmas, my delay is pathetic I know.
What can I say about my Christmas vacation, other than it was absolutely and completely perfect. I was soooo excited about my journey to England for the holidays, and couldn't believe how long it had been since I was in Woolley prior. Time is such a powerful force that I'm humbled by constantly.
My flight was on the Saturday before Christmas, and I was prepped for my long journey to Cornwall. Bags packed, snacks at the ready, and music queued to go. The journey was easy, and I was so excited to be greeted by Dave's face in Exeter on Sunday evening. We made the drive back to Woolley for a drink before my jet lag hit me pretty hard, and I was ready for bed.
Monday began the days upon days of festivities and relaxing and they flew by far too quickly! So many walks and trips to the beach, and I forget how pretty it is there when I'm away for so long, but I'm convinced it might be the most beautiful place on the planet.
|Day 1 romps in the woods!|
|Pretty great to be back in this beautiful place!|
There was a Christmas party already on Tuesday evening at Katie's house, and that was a lot of fun, drinking plenty of mulled wine because tis the season! The next day was followed with my first of a couple trips to the beach to watch the sunset. I could sit on those cliffs for days if I were allowed, they're so magical.
|My favorite fields, ever.|
|Hi Duckpool and Hi Dave!|
Then like that it was already Christmas Eve. During the evening Pete, Mark, Dave and I went to Clovelly to see the Christmas lights. Clovelly is always so fun to go wander about, as if you'll recall from prior posts, this is the village that doesn't allow cars and has cobbled streets making it very quaint. Clovelly is also filled with cats who roam the streets, and they are so adorable. We had a nice evening looking about and having a drink in the pub before heading home.
|The cats of Clovelly!|
Then came Christmas! It was really good fun having Christmas with all of the kids, and that was my first time experiencing Christmas with children, and it definitely adds quite the different dynamic to the festivities. The kids all just get so excited about their presents, it's hilarious, while the adults patiently let it all unfold. The remainder of the day was spent eating and drinking and watching a film in the evening by the fire. This was definitely a great Christmas, and I was so happy to be a part of it all :-)
Boxing Day started out with a nice breakfast, and then a trip to the beach. We also played with our new Christmas things and eventually made our way for a walk to the pub. The nearest pub happens to be one of the most beautiful walks in the area, so Dave and I did that and Pete and Mark met us for a round of Pictionary, which I'm abysmal at, before calling it a day. The 27th was filled with a trip around Marsland beach and seeing Barry gig in Bude, and then packing my bags for a getaway that was to come on the 28th!
|Walks at Duckpool.|
|Pictionary is NOT my forte|
Have I mentioned before how absurdly good Dave is at gift giving? After I'd booked my flight to England for the holidays he started planning us a little trip as my Christmas present, and I was so excited about our Magical Mystery Tour. I was told to throw a few things in my bag, and he took care of the rest, and off we went on Monday morning.
|Magical Mystery Tour!|
Before I knew it, after drives on the windy Cornish roads, we wound up at the Eden Project! I had heard all about the Eden Project before, and always wanted to check it out, and was so excited that Dave took us here :-) There are two biomes, filled with plants of all kinds, one emulating a rainforest and the other a Mediterranean ecosystem. We had such a nice day wandering about the biomes and the gardens, and it was a day I'll never forget.
|Inside the rainforest.|
|The Brits and their tea|
|Mediterranean biome statues.|
After the Eden Project, Dave drove me to the most beautiful little coastal village Fowey! He had arranged us a cottage for two nights, and it was absolutely perfect!!!!! I was so excited with how perfect of a day and cottage Dave had arranged for us, I was beaming :-) After getting settled in our cottage we headed into town for a nice meal at the pub and a walkabout the town's quiet streets. It was a perfect evening that ended with a film back at the cottage.
|Pub dinner at the Ship Inn|
When we'd arrived to our cottage it was dark and kind of rainy and we couldn't see the view of our cottage, but we awoke to bright sunshine, and the view was magic!
|View from the bedroom patio!|
It was a perfect, sunshiney day for a trip to the Lost Gardens of Heligan. Dave had planned out this other journey around the Lost Gardens and it was spectacular! These botanical gardens are "typical of the 19th century Gardenesque style with areas of different character and in different design styles." There was a jungle, the woodlands, a vegetable garden, and many others! We wandered about for a few hours and my favorite things were the famous sculptures - the Giant's Head, the Mud Maid and the Grey Lady!
|The Mud Maid!|
|The Giant's Head|
|Suspension bridge through the jungle.|
After the trip through the gardens, we headed back to our cottage for a few before deciding that we would take a nice long walk. So if you take a look at Fowey on a map, you'll see that it's surrounded by water. Dave had found that the National Trust has made a great hike that starts with taking the Bodinnick ferry across the River Fowey, then walk the length of the tributary to the Parish where you cross over the bridge and walk back along the other side winding up in Polruan. It was a great couple of miles, and then we got to wander about Polruan, having some mulled cider before ultimately taking the ferry back to Fowey.
|Bodinnick ferry :-)|
|The halfway point!|
|We got into Polruan at dusk.|
|And saw the waves!!!!|
|Wandering the streets of Polruan.|
|Nighttime ferry back to Fowey.|
When we got back to Fowey we had a great Indian meal, and ended it with a nightcap at a really kitchy loft bar. The Irish coffees sealed the night just swell and so concluded the second night of our little trip.
|Irish coffees at Sams!|
The last day of our trip was equally as fun as well. We sadly had to leave our cottage, but we made a stop in St. Austell to see the new Star Wars! The film had been all of the hype, and it was definitely worth seeing in a theatre so you could see it all on a big screen! After the film we made our way home for a relaxed evening with jacket potatoes and working on the puzzle.
|Diligently working away at the Bude Harbor puzzle|
|New Years Eve feast!!!|
|Happy New Year!|
|Anthony, Dave and Gareth|
|Winning games of air hockey!|
On New Years Day we took it easy in the morning and visited some more with Ian before he headed back home. We then summoned the energy to go on a great walk around the cliffs to feel some fresh air in our faces. We did one of my favorite loops I've been shown in Morwenstow starting at the Tea Room, going down to Hawkers Hut, and then back up to the Bush for a pint. Then post trek we ventured to go get Chinese carry out and stopped off in Stratton along the way for the last of the mulled cider. It was a great start to 2016 :-)
|Pete, Ian and Mark working on the New Years Day mega crossword!|
|Cozied up by the fire in Stratton :-)|
Then before we knew it, it was already my last day :-( Time really does go so fast, doesn't it? Between my bouts of pouting about having to leave, and packing, we found time for one final run on the cliffs with Katie, and it was truly the most beautiful run I have ever been on in my entire life. Cornwall is truly a magical place that I hope everyone gets to see some day because the natural beauty of this place is truly special. I was so glad to end my time with this run and a chance to marvel in the cliffs one last time.
|Going down towards Marsland|
|Storm clouds looking quite ominous.|
|Looping back down to the beach.|
|And a final sunset at Marsland Beach to end a beautiful day.|
I feel so lucky to have Cornwall (and the people in Cornwall) in my heart. I can't say enough about how great my trip there was. It's never enough time when I'm there, but I always know I'll be back. Thanks Pete, Mark, Mary, and Katie for always making me feel the most welcome when I'm in town :-) And thank you all for such a lovely Christmas holiday and showing me how Boxing Day is spent once and for all!
|Cornwall in Cornish :)|