Riding in a northerly-easterly direction on a First Great Western train, I have discovered something: they have acquired free Wifi! This is a welcomed surprise, for the SconeLady will waste no time lollygagging and gazing out. She has blogposts to write; a Book to complete. So much to do, so little time! But - it is rather distracting, all of this amazing scenery out there.. in fact, I just caught a glimpse of what seems to be a castle! and that group of thatched cottages there outside my window, who can resist them? Perhaps I could just gaze a while after all..
The Saltash Bridge, Plymouth UK
St Ives Harbor, March 2015
"Hello, Miss!" cried the lady at the register as I came in. "Croissants? Here are Three of them for you, all fresh. Ready for the butter and the jam." And she plopped them into a bag, just for me. She was certainly speaking my language! It's the way things are, here. They get to know the many who come year after year, unable to stay away. They understand. Most of the shop workers, the waiters and waitresses, and certainly all the fishermen are locals. They don't like to leave either.
As I walked through our door, Rosie was slicing fresh bread from the St Ives Bakery, and making toast. We ate and drank in a leisurely way, ignoring completely the looming separation ahead. I think I managed a weak smile, and she a weak laugh. We were probably pitiful.
Friend Rosie, and her TedLast night as we went out for our 'Pud' rather late, we toasted each other's pudding choices and talked of old times. Of people we both knew and *remembered well. Of the many threads webbing us together, two lives separated by miles but not by choice.
And then suddenly, it was time to go, to wind our way in the black Mercedes down and down toward the water. And too soon there we were, I in the train car doorway, they standing just outside of it. Then the wheels of the train rolled on down as the figures of Rosie and of Ted became smaller and smaller, and then disappeared altogether.
A few minutes later as as the train pulled away from St Erth, I sat next to a kindly older couple who live quite happily in a beach-facing cottage overlooking Carbis Bay, near St Ives. Raised their children there. Now play with their grandchildren along the sands. The man was very solicitous toward his wife (even though he himself carried a cane), and later she confided that she had to 'go to hospital today', but of course I never discovered the reason why. As they walked slowly from the train (helping each other 'mind the gap'), I wished I could somehow go with them, and help.
Carbis Bay, Cornwall
And thus I came to London, boarded the Heathrow Express, to an obscure hotel near the runway, ready to fly off tomorrow. Back, briefly, to my home and loved ones; those who will gather for the remembrance of another such lady whom we have known and loved for decades - and now miss.
See you along the way!
See you along the way!
Rosie and the SconeLady: chocolate mousse (me) and bread-and-butter pudding (she)