Under the cliffs at Lusty Glaze beach,the sound trap holds you in a basin of sound that sets your mind on edge through the signals from your ears.Oh Lusty,my joy aboundeth as I soak up your waves energy,encased in the caves with jutting spikes ,contoured by the Atlantic,and washed in its spray of pure white foam.
We stand in awe of its spendour it’s Ardour,it’s tidal conversations with our soul.If the tides were each an individual word,what would they be?If each waves were as words too,then what would they say:Dream,Fantasy,Mermaid,Pirate,surf,body board,sand-castle,frisby,knotted handkerchief,windbreak,ice -cream.So,my quirky view of the waves might not be yours,and that isn’t the point.What is the point is that the waves are magical,they take us away to something far less than the banal,something altogether more more more fulfilling,
Hiding behind the glaze hotel,a new addition to me since my immigration to Dorsetshire,I spied the wire supports for the cliffs to the top of the beach towards Porth,again,new to me,and the product of potential cliff falls ,or just the potential of falls.When I was younger,I would attempt to climb up these.These dangers never struck me too much,but nowadays I guess they were and the lifegauards ,If on patrol,would quickly disperse any would be Chris Bonnington from attempting such an ascent.But then,especially in November,Newquay was quiet, very sparsely populated,with the tail wind of hardy visitors all but a distant memory,dwindling from the August bank holiday,If I thought about it back then,you could walk ,when the tide was out from Pentire,across Fisty ,to the Harbour,then Tolcarne,and Towan and eventually to Lusty without meeting a soul,with out communing with another human,
Last week,even in the cold of November winds,there were people ,fresh faced young people,with their surfing garb and warm smiles,and it lifted my mood ,my yearning for yesterday year,those days of “Raining days and Mondays”.Why these young people,making lattes and special cocktails dressed Lusty in human splendour.If you didn’t know what the high tides could do,you might think that it never floods,but it does,and always will do,but the Hotel takes it all on the chin,serves up another latter,and lives on.Yes,the old place lives on,now with the Atlantic battering luxury flats where the hotel Riviera once stood,where I played the piano for the visitors,now,the private domain of private flats with glorious views of mother Atlantic.Triple glazed apparently,it will need to be ,or they won’t hear their tales in the winter storms.
Dwelling on that day a little after my visit to the chapel of rest,I wondered why uswe
put such stock on being Cornish.After all,there aren’t too many of us ,and we have our quirky ways,but somehow we “get on”,we make do,we mend ,we fish,we make music,we draw,we paint,we eat and make pasties,cream teas,and the like.We know what poverty is like,but it’s Poverty with a view ,the best sort.
Driving back to my nieces home near Eden ,maybe East of Eden,I’m reminded of how Cornwall has changed since when I moved away in 1988.Back then ,tourism in Cornwall was important,but not on the scale to which it is now.As I drove to St Austell,I was reminded of the redundant Goss moor,the plain of desolation from Indian Queens to Roche,the rock ,and the clay villages of St Dennis ,Nanpean,Foxhole,and St Stephen.Now,the A30 carries the visitors to the depths of the county,allowing coverage of the compass points with ease.Why,gone are the days when a holiday to Cornwall would mean two days travelling as the A30 now links you to the M5 and further to the north,or the M4 to Wales or London.We forget,or should I say,I forget,that 30 years ago,the A30 was still “conjestion paradise”.Now,it is Cornwall’s savour,just one road can make such a difference.
One day can have a profound affect on the way we process things,and I feel that I must record that Monday a couple of weeks ago.As a boy,the roads seemed so quiet,as my weird hobby,popular at the time ,especially amongst young boys in Cornwall,of collecting license numbers in a book would be impossible now as the sheer volume of transport has proliferated to such a degree.
Cornwall has a way of embracing change that other more sophisticated areas and their environmental lobbies resist with an enviable robustness.As i observe the wind turbines driving from the top of Mitchell heading towards Truro,I realise that the county ,rich in mineral deposits,still gives up so much of its beauty to further the economy.Im not aware of the u employment figures in the county anymore,but I knew at one point in the early eighties that they were twice the National average.These figures are one thing,but living them is another thing altogether.
From my own family there,I thought how education and opportunities for young people are still a problem,with some schools faring well,but others struggling in their wake to deliver the education that these young ones desperately need.
Thinking of my sisters,of their industry,that they all left school without basic qualifications that are entry level now,and yet,they worked so very very hard ,and they are a credit to themselves.
My leaving the county was,to me,vital,and from Indian Queens I took with me the feelings of a Celt,the arrogance of insecurity,and the will Power of the miner,mixed it all up,and out I popped.That Pasty of dreams,,that filling of marvels,that pastry of hope .
Yes,That day, fought it all back .