Wednesday, January 23, 2008

the West End

I know you're probably tired of this trip to England, but I have a little more to tell. Ok, maybe a lot more to tell. Ok, lots and lots...I could ramble on forever, but I promise to tie this up by Friday. I hope.

While in Cornwall we visited a place called Eden Center. In 1994 someone got the idea to transform an old clay pit into a diverse microcosm of the world's plants. The pit was terraced, Biomes were constructed, and plants and animals were introduced. It is an amazing feat of engineering and vision, and rather space-age looking, but inside it's pure nature with a Warm Temperate Biome and a Humid Tropics Biome. It's a wonderful learning center, but also a venue for public events.

We spent quite a bit of time here sweating our way through all the Biomes and when we got outside it was just as hot! Truly unseasonable weather for England.

We also drove down to Falmouth that day to see the famous Falmouth cutters. Many years ago when we were cruising, we read books by a couple who cruised around the world on a Falmouth cutter they built. The black boat in the photo looks a little like their boat.

The next day we drove to St. Ives. What a beautiful setting. The ocean is so blue and the harbour so picturesque. And the tourists are so thick, but the natives speech is thicker! For example:

While trying to find parking we asked an attendant if he could direct us to the closest car park that might have space. Honest, I'm not making this up....He said, "Go uh thi way ta tha hrow-ry club an.." I interrupted and asked, "the Rotary Club?" He said, "ya, tha hrow-ry club and ..." I interrupted again, "did you say Rotary Club?" and finally in exasperation he said, "Oin tryin to tell yu Luv! Go uh thi way ta tha hrow-ry club and you ca par thare." I still could not understand him at all! But we went off in the direction he had pointed and at the top of the hill we found...the...RUGBY club. Hilarious laughter ensued, but we did find a parking space. With his heavy accent it seemed to us that he was swallowing his words or speaking only from the back of his throat, or not using his tongue at all, because very few consonants made their way out! Now when I interrupt the Lord of the Manor, he says in his best Cornish accent, "Oin tryin to tell yu Luv..."

Added later: I found this great clip of a Cornish accent. Give it a listen.

While in St. Ives we visited the Tate Art Museum, the local museum, the Oldest House, this old arch, and the harbour.

Then we drove to St. Michael's Mount. The tide was out so we were able to walk across the causeway. We made the strenuous hike up to the top and toured the castle too. It was a fascinating place.

Thanks for putting up with yet another post about England. Tomorrow we'll dodge horses and sheep on our way through Dartmoor National Park and we'll visit another garden and more relatives. I bet you're saying Yipee! right about now.


Knitty, Vintage and Rosy said...

By all means, continue with the lovely pictures!

Knitty, Vintage and Rosy

T2 said...

lol i remember when you told that story when you came home it was too funneh!! >w< b

keep up da guud work~!

Pippajo said...

Bring it on!