Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Cornwall, Day 41 (Fog and Frosting)

Barnoon Cemetery, St Ives

There was so much fog that you almost couldn't see your hand in front of your face. My iPhone weather report disputed this, showing utter sunshine for days. I wanted to believe the iPhone, but finally simply couldn't. We very nearly parted ways.

Even so, at 11:00, 10 people gathered in the fog outside the St Ives Guildhall. It was a Tuesday, and everybody knows that if it's Tuesday, Tony will show up at the Guildhall ready to teach. Ready to guide. Ready to lead!

If you wish to know more about St Ives, you need go no further than the Guildhall on a Tuesday. St Ives is more than just a lovely tourist town. It is filled with strange and fascinating adventures, from hidden skeletons, to numerous shipwrecks and rescues, and ancient mariners who mourned their wives and become unbelievable artists. It's all there.

Among other things, we learned that:

  • the HMS Wave ran aground on massive rocks along Westcott's Quay in St Ives during a storm. The brave townspeople used a 'breeches buoy' to rescue the crew (*breeches buoy: think Towering Inferno, the movie)
  • Alfred Wallace mourned his wife by creating art on odd bits and pieces of material he had around the house. Two visiting artists accidentally saw his art through the door, and fell in love with it
  • Wallis' grave is in Barnoon Cemetery, decorated in part by Bernard Leach, the 20th century's foremost potter who knew Wallis
  • Cornish storms can become so furious in wintertime that some waves overreach structures and cottages along the harbor (including the cottage currently housing the SconeLady herself!)
  • old fishermen's lodges still stand along St Ives Harbor. Tradition holds that no women ever entered a fishermen's lodge (I really don't think they wanted to anyway. it was smelly and sticky in there); that swearing and alcohol were absolutely banned within the walls of the fishermen's lodges; and a person could nearly choke on all the smoke generated by cigars, pipes, and cigarettes inside a lodge at any given moment (not to mention the chewing tobacco and spittoons - yikes!)
  • if a fisherman did swear, he would pay money into the 'swear box' affixed to the wall. No one is ever known to complain for having to pay the fine
  • all of this goes to show you the influence Methodism had, and still has, on the town of St Ives! We love those Methodists! (check this out: 'Teetotal Street'! haha!)

HMS Wave acknowledges bravery of Captain and townspeople

HMS Wave runs aground

Huge wave overshoots same cottage now housing the SconeLady!

Tour guide Tony recommends local pub, The Sloop
(Ted's own favorite!)

Fisherman's lodge, St Ives Harbor

"No Swearing Allowed!"

And there is supposed to be something about Frosting in this post. It was good. It was very good. But now I'm too sleepy to write about it. Next time!!

Goodnight my dear Readers.

See you along the way!
the SconeLady

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