3rd August 2020

17th July 2020
Gillynvase Beach 

We wake early, 5.30 am, to runners pounding by us. We weren’t moved on. We got through the night, which is always a relief.
Of course, Peter is eager to get the bed put up, the curtain down and look more like we’re here for the day.





The morning is sunny and warm, the Bay beautiful with the sea like a millpond.
We put our chairs out under the shade of a pretty tree, where we eat breakfast – porridge for Peter, granola for me –   and have our half hour of prayer/meditation. This is a special time for us which we rarely omit, a time to be in tune with the day, each other, ourselves and with God. It gives us joy and courage for whatever comes our way during the day.



The sea is out, exposing rocks, where we spot some small fish and talk to a mum collecting crabs with her young son. I think of the many times we spent happy days on beaches, regardless of the weather, swimming or scouring rock pools or searching for fossils. One thing for sure, you could never just be still.I miss those days sometimes. `We accompany the grandchildren now, but I’m not as able or active as I once was. 

Gillynvase beach is a short walk up the coast and the sun, even this early ( must be only about 9.30 am) is hot on us, reminding me, with the long stretch of sand too, of previous holidays around the mediteranean.

The sound of children playing, seagulls squawking, young people laughing, you wouldn’t think we’re living in a pandemic.

Around midday we decide to find our campsite so we can set ourselves up for the next four nights. I look forward to not worrying about finding a convenient wild camping spot. 

We put the postcode in the sat nav and follow the instructions, coming off the main road, down country lanes, and finally into a small lane (a boreen) with grass down the middle and only the width of a car.
“This can’t be right,” I say as we continue winding round this lane, which is not a through road and only goes to the farm. 
There are cows in the field opposite the campsite, which is obviously another field for them when it’s not holiday season. We see the farmhouse tucked away behind some trees before we see the tents and campers. Ah, that’s where we go.
We pull in and notice a sign that tells us to ring this number, which we did. 
“Wait there , I’ll be right with you,” the lady says. 
We look around and it’s then I notice the view. Wow! We are on a hill and I think, it’s confirmed later, that what we are looking down at is Falmouth Bay. With the blue water,  the clear blue skies, birds singing and cows mooing in the background, I feel well blessed. 
The farmer  arrives in her  jeep like vehicle, wearing boots, her face rosy and weathered, her dark hair tied back. She takes our envelope with the money in and tells us we can park anywhere at all, except where there is electric hook up, as we’ve not paid for that. I am so thankful we have our solar panel, which provides all the electric we need, for the fridge, the lights, our phones. It’s invaluable when we’re wild camping especially. We talk about how everything has to be different at the moment keeping our distance from people and watching everything we do. She is careful to keep at least 2 metres away from us at all times and with the number of people she has to see I don’t blame her.

She points out where the toilets are , then leaves us to it.
There is cow smell all around us. This is truly a working farm, the campsite just an extra bit of income. I love it though.
We take a good look round to see where we can put the camper and the awning to get the benefit of the wonderful  view. 



“Ah, that’s it, put the door going that way round,” I say as we get to grips with the canvas, trying to work out which way round we’ve got the awning.
“Perfect,” I  stare down at the sea, imagining having coffee, reading, eating breakfast while enjoying such a glorious picture.

Unfortunately it was short lived as later that day we get six cars with their tents park in front of us. So disappointing. But hey, that’s life. Oh well.

After a quick lunch, finishing off the bread and the feta cheese, we amble back down the lane. a mile or so,  to find a map the farmer told us about. I’m keen to walk from the campsite into Falmouth. After all it’s only a couple of miles, well, three at most.  Of course, it never happens. 
We find the map but can’t make head nor tail of it. A lady with a large lawnmower turns up and helps us work it out, saying, “have a good holiday” as we go on our way.

We carry on to the village, Budock water, which is about a mile along the windy road.  

There’s a pub with customers sitting outside, the familiar sound of “normal” chatting and laughter, echoing through the street. Lovely to see. If there’s somewhere to sit we’ll stay,have a drink, but no, they are full. Nobody allowed inside yet.
We pass the village shop, two older ladies queue outside next to a sign that says “Only one person allowed in at a time. Sorry for the inconvenience.” Where do the villagers do their catching up these days , I wonder.
A little way on we see a woman up a ladder on the outside of a building that looks to me like a church, but turns out to be a restaurant and the lady is putting  cutlery around a clock face. You’d have to see it.
It is a church building and still has many of the features – windows, choir loft etc, which the owner has converted beautifully. Peter wants to come here for dinner before we leave. We don’t, not because I won’t spend the money, which could easily be the case, but simply because I couldn’t enjoy it with cold sores on my lips. So painful when I eat.
We chat with the owner who tells us how to get to Maenporth Beach by the backpaths. It gets my hopes up, but , as you know already we don’t do it. 

Dinner for us this evening is a bean chilli using up any vegetables that are getting a bit tired. Delicious. 
When we’ve cleared up we sit with our glasses( plastic, of course)  of wine and watch he sun go down over the Bay. Red, orange, even purple, the colour of the sky this evening. 

We read in bed for a while , using our head torches.