Cornwall 2005, day one: In which we begin our journey

Published August 4, 2005

Day One was the only day that I really cared about the weather, although, of course, I was praying for it not to rain for the rest of the week. Day One was a surprise, something I’d been planning for a while, since I was at this particular place last. While Mr C was packing, I popped out to collect some bits and bobs for the journey. He guessed that I was planning a picnic.

Holiday Ruin Score: Mr C - 1, Me - 0

After I’d made the lunches and put the finishing touches to my three bags worth of stuff, I threw some socks into his one bag of stuff, and it all fell out into complete and utter disarray. I hastily tried to replace the carefully packed items, but I was caught in the act.

Holiday Ruin Score: Mr C - 1, Me - 1

As we grew closer to my surprise destination, the clouds grew ominously blacker and there was less and less blue sky peeking through. I sighed. Already, I knew that this week was doomed to be one where “what can go wrong, will go wrong” and although I was trying to be okay with it, I really wanted the sun to come out. Just for today. Please?

It didn’t. We stopped at Lydford Gorge, a gorgeous place to walk, but left the picnic in the car for later. Halfway through and we discovered the waterfall (actually, I think the waterfall was already discovered, National Trust had something to do with it, I’m sure), and it was beautiful.

Waterfall at Lydford Gorge

Mr C was not wearing adequate footwear for the occasion though. Given that there was damp in the air and this walk was next to a waterfall and river, the pathway was a little bit muddy and slippery. He almost went over the edge several times.

Holiday Ruin Score: Mr C - 2, Me - 1

Despite the fact that he was clinging on to me like an old man, we still managed to overtake lots of slow walkers (something we would find ourselves doing a lot during the week), and soon we had entered the really good bit of the walk: The Devil’s Cauldron. The way the water rushes through the rocks is just incredible, and as you gaze upwards and see how the flow has eaten through the rocks over thousands of years, it’s really amazing. To think, you’re staring up at a cliff face, because the river started at the top but is now ten feet below you. Fantastic. I recommend that walk to everyone.

The good thing about stopping and having a break halfway through the journey is that it’s not very far to go before you reach the destination. Now, I’d previously commented that Mr C shouldn’t expect too much because it’s Cornwall and not London. Then we got to Newquay. All the shops were open until about 8pm. There were loads of places to eat and drink, and so many amusements I was in heaven.

Mr C declared this holiday should be one where I try out lots of new things. I was a little unsure about this at first, but it seemed like a good idea. So, the first thing on our list was to try out a Mexican restaurant, and what do you know? There was one in Newquay.

The Mexican Cantina restaurant is at the far end of the high street, meaning we had to walk past all of the amusements to get there… it took a while. Anyway, I didn’t like this restaurant for four reasons.

  1. It was too dark.
  2. The music was too loud for a pleasant eating atmosphere.
  3. We seemed to have a different waiter/ess every single time someone came to our table. (Although this seems to be the normal thing nowadays - you don’t get that at TGI Fridays!)
  4. Our table was at an angle to everyone else.

I know that you won’t think that’s a problem, but to me, it really, really is bad. Everyone else was in a nice straight row and we were just skewed to them. Mr C said it was so that people could access the staircase behind us, but if that was true, they shouldn’t try and put a table in front of the stairs!! Anyway, they also gave us too much food, the starter was practically a whole meal. When the main course arrived, I didn’t really like it but I’m not sure I could have eaten it if it had been tasty. So, my first new experience of the week had gone all wrong.

Holiday Ruin Score: Mr C - 2, Me - 2

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