An eventful holiday in Cornwall

I didn’t achieve my lofty aim of getting the blog up to date before we left Areandare for our recent holiday. I couldn’t prioritise it as much as other things. Apologies.

I do however have a couple of draft posts I’d begun, with amazing photos from our journey along the Huddersfield Narrow, Standedge Tunnel and Huddersfield Broad, that I’ll make time to polish and post in the next week or so …

Spinning plates at Land's End

Spinning plates at Land’s End

I’m conscious of a life-long tendency to take on too much and feel the smothering pressure of overwhelm – I’m learning more ways to let go of what hinders my balance, like a true Libran. Being a professional Life Coach helps with this you won’t be surprised to hear!

I’m okay now with letting a couple of my ‘to-do’ plates stop, or fall, rather than feel I’m spending my life going from one to another, spinning them constantly but never really getting anywhere.

It doesn’t always work, I still experience that “Oh my goodness how will I ever fit it all in” feeling. And at times like that I don’t blog or do other things that aren’t vital.

Does that make sense?

Anyway, here we are, back on board after an eventful holiday.


Cornwall was magnificent as usual – though admittedly it’s far more commercialised than I fondly remember from my last trip to the end of the earth in the late 1990s. I chose not to take photos of the theme-park-like buildings that have taken over at Land’s End, preferring the sign post (though now you have to pay to have your photo take next to it!) and view of the Atlantic Ocean. It reminds me of Cape Reinga, at the tip of the North Island of New Zealand, where the Tasman Sea meets the Pacific Ocean.

The famous sign post - now cordoned off and sold for photos of tourists

The famous sign post, as close as you can get to it – now cordoned off and photos with tourists cost money


The end of the land – south west England


Stunning colours on the cliffs



We all (six adults and two children) squeezed into a chalet owned by the daughter of a friend of mine. Jo and I were best buddies when I lived in Germany from 1981 to 1985, we became pregnant at the same time, and gave birth within four days of each other early in 1983.  She lives in Phillack, Hayle, not far from St Ives, so it’s been a long time since we’ve caught up.


Rolling Waves Beach Chalet at Riviere Towans, Hayle


Amazing view from the chalet – St Ives is in the background

Of course Barry managed to sample a fair few local ales, it would be rude not to – including this one in a pub of the same name, a short walk from the holiday home …



On the downside, if you look closely at the photograph above, you may notice a small redness above Barry’s left eye? This picture was taken on the Monday. By Thursday this was spreading and he had a pounding headache. We were at Land’s End and he stayed in the car for half the day, unable to face getting out into the wind and rain (just as we went on holiday the weather went from sweltering hot to changeable!).

That evening, he went to the emergency NHS walk-in centre in Redruth and was diagnosed with a viral sinusitis …

In the meantime, I got to tick something off my bucket list and saw an amazing production of ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream‘, at Minack Theatre with my eldest daughter Lisa. What was even more incredible was that we arrived early enough to get a good place in the queue and scored front row seats!


This has to be the most magnificent theatre setting in the world?


A bonus of sitting in the front row is the ability to get a landscape photo of the ‘stage’

While Barry rested, and hoped the antibiotics would begin to work, we all tried to carry on holidaying.


Carbis Bay – a beach-full of windbreakers is so quintessentially British!


Cornwall wouldn’t be the same without a cream tea – delicious!

In the nick of time

Forty eight hours after starting his antibiotics for supposed sinusitis, Barry was no better. In fact he was getting worse. I’d been so caught up with spending time with my delightful grandchildren that I hadn’t investigated other possibilities for his redness and pain.

Fortunately Barry had! And he realised that rather than sinusitis, he could have Shingles.

So we returned to the NHS walk-in centre on Saturday evening and he was right – shingles of the optic nerve – what could be worse for a photographer? Fortunately we’re pretty sure he’s not one of the 40% who suffer corneal damage, despite the delay in diagnosis. Phew! But he was pretty miserable and it spoilt the break for him.

For someone who rarely takes any drugs, he was soon put on a cocktail of pills and potions. It did the trick however, and halted further progress of the nasty Herpes Zosta virus. We’ll certainly recognise it if we’re ever unfortunate to come across it again!

Feeling a little better once he’d been put on the right medication,  we stopped for a couple of hours at Tintagel Castle on our way to Exeter to spend a night with my younger sister to break the long journey back to the boat .

Reputed to be the birthplace of King Arthur, it’s an English Heritage property so we were happy as places are few and far between on the canals and we’ve not been getting our money’s worth from our membership!

Tintagel Castle

Tintagel Castle

Thank you Jim!

We’d heard a lot about house sitting in New Zealand, most people get someone to do it for them when they go on holiday. Friends of ours even spent a year ‘sitting’ in houses in NZ and Australia and having a marvellous time visiting different places.

While we were in Cornwall, the lovely Jim and his partner Hilary, boat-sat for us.

Jim’s far better at keeping his blog up to date than me, and he wrote a few pots about his time on board. It was fabulous to know that she was in such good hands. Thank you so much Jim and Hilary!

Barry’s on the mend now, though has only one day left of his Acycolvir so I’m hoping it won’t try and sneak it’s way back in once that’s gone. Getting to the NHS walk-in centre with a hire car is sure simpler than finding a GP on foot when you’re living on a narrowboat!

I deduced that he got stressed just thinking about leaving Areandare and taking a ‘holiday’. Don’t worry everyone, he’s fine now …

2 thoughts on “An eventful holiday in Cornwall

  1. Loved the pics of Cornwall! Fond childhood memories of the Minnack & we went to Tintagel on our honeymoon 🙂 Delighted Barry’s improving – horrid disease!

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