Well hello there. Sorry it's taken so long for me to get this post out, but my life has been nothing but crazy for the last few weeks and I have hardly had a chance to catch my breath. However, I still have every intention of sharing with you my new favorite place on this planet that makes me want to sell all of my things, pack my bags and throw caution to the wind. That place is called Fowey (pronounced Foy).
Fowey is amazing. Fowey took my breath away. Fowey made me feel like all of the bad and evil in the world did not exist and that the life you see in the home decorator magazines is not only possible, but happening. This beautiful little port town located on the Southern coast of Cornwall has records dating back to the 11th century, however activity was surely occurring before that. What I am sayin' is - this place has history.
And not like - "oh, this is the place where Jon and Kate Gosselin lived before they hated each other" kind of history - we are talking some real stories of the past.
This is a view looking down on the little city. See all the fishing boats? See all the little white-washed houses? My dinky little camera does not do it justice - nor does that grey sky - but this view took my breath away. Seeing as most of the buildings in Fowey date back to the 14th century, I have to imagine that this is pretty close to how it looked as smugglers and royalty alike spent time here.
Before we could really get down to the nitty gritty and explore Fowey, we had to find a place to park up our rig. Luckily for us, we found a campsite that was only a few miles from town...
...and this was our view. Not too shabby, if I do say so myself.
This little egg stand was at the entrance to our campsite. Love it.
By the time we had found Fowey, found the campsite and got all settled in, we were famished so Dan got out the little BBQ and we started grilling.
On the menu: chicken marinated in BBQ sauce, grilled corn (those things wrapped in foil), mashed potatoes and baked beans.
Please do not judge the amount of mashed potatoes on my plate. I love them and I lose all self-control when they are put in front of my face. Enough about my gluttony. Moving on...
This is us as we were outside grilling. It was FREEZING with a wicked wind, hence the sweatshirt AND down vest, but we didn't care. See, it is just pretty hard to phase someone from Oregon and someone from England with bad weather - we have both grown up with the stuff.
Rain and wind has us staring up at the sky shouting, "Is that all you've got???!!!?!"
The next morning, September 5th, was Dan's birthday, which of course had to start with presents. He had been asking me aaaalllllll weeeek if he could open his presents and, after days of torture, he finally could.
Dan is like a child when it comes to presents. He cannot handle them sitting out. He tries to open them/shake them/peek at them if he can. I had to guard these with my life until the day came. It was like keeping a dog from smelling another dog's butt - not pleasant, difficult and downright a pain in the...butt???
You can thank me later for that lovely analogy.
During Dan's time living in Portland, OR, he became quite a fan of the Portland Trail Blazers, our professional basketball team here in town. One of his gifts was a ball signed by they entire 2008-2009 team.
This will probably be worth a lot more when they win the 2010 playoffs. I'm just sayin'. GO BLAZERS!!!
After the gift giving and breakfast, we headed into town to explore Fowey. Due to the fact that this town was built so long ago, the streets are tiny, tiny, tiny. Very small cars can get through, but there was no way our motorhome would fit, so we parked our rig in a parking lot at the top of the town and rode our bikes down into the town.
There is Dan on his bike as we made our descent. The entire town is on a hill, so it was a fun ride down. Coming back up at the end of the day was a bit more challenging, but it helped burn off some of the calories from the truck-load of mashed potatoes I ate the night before.
Once down in the middle of town, we found a place near the water to lock up our bikes. This sign was right near that spot. I liked it. I liked it a lot. I am a nerd for history.
This was the home of author Daphne du Maurier and she even set some of her books in this house, which is now occupied by her son.
Down by the water I snapped these pics. Everything I saw looked like a postcard. The green was so...green. The houses were so...charming. The water was so...calm. I was instantly in love.
I can see myself here - drinking tea on the porch while I read Jane Austin, with my hair long and flowing in the coastal wind. C'mon people...let yourself go there.
How's that for a yard, eh? All of that was for that one house. Daisy Buchanan, is that you?
This structure is called The Blockhouse and was built in 1380 after an attack by the Spanish. An identical twin to this building is directly across the river and at one point, a giant chain was strung between the two as a way to protect the harbor from being attacked. Cannon balls from the ancient Spanish attacks are still being found in the harbor.
Look how tiny the doorway is! This building was built in 1430 and was used as merchant quarters. I know this because I cannot help myself from asking the poor souls who work at these places if they know about the history of the building - but I found, thankfully, that they like to answer the questions.
This is a really good example of what most of the town center area looks like. All of the buildings are painted white or pastel pink, blue or yellow. The streets are full of people as there are very few cars. Everything is clean and well-kept and beautiful. We had a great time just walking around.
We walked all over the place - through the city, through the residential area - we saw a lot. It is all really close together and I believe that less than 3,000 people live there, so to say that it is quaint does not even describe how it feels to be there.
At one point, as we were walking along an esplanade, there was a wall with all of these little holes cut out of it. They offered a chance to really focus on the view and take it all in.
One thing that I have come to adore about England are all of the old churches - they are everywhere, and I mean, EVERYWHERE - so, if you ever miss one, just keep driving and I promise you will come across another very shortly. This is St. Fimbarrus' Church and was built in the 12th century. While we were visiting there was a wedding going on, so we could not go in, but we got to hear them ringing the bells just as they did to warn of attacks back in the day and to mourn those who were dying from the plague.
The Bloody Plague! (that one is for you...and you know who you are)
One of the things that people kept telling me before we left was, "You MUST try a Cornish Cream Tea." Being a naive A-MER-I-CAN, I had no idea what this was, until I ordered it. A 'Cream Tea' consists of a cup of tea, 2 scones, jam and clotted cream. What is clotted cream, you ask? Well, the best way to describe it is a mix between butter and whipped cream.
You can forget everything I said about burning off calories, because I think that I took them all back in at this point. Hey - when in Rome...
Before we headed back up the hill to return to our home on wheels, we rode our bikes to Readymoney Cove. It is called this due to the high amount of smuggling that used to occur here. Had it been a) warmer and b) earlier, this would have been a great spot to swim - maybe next time.
Once back at the campsite, we freshened up, got a cab and headed back into town for a lovely birthday dinner for Dan, followed by a bit of a tour of the pubs of Fowey. It was a wonderful, wonderful day and the entire trip left me feeling more and more connected to this place that is now forever a part of my life. I am so thankful for the opportunities I have had to travel this year and I look forward to many more travels in the future. It is like a drug; the more you travel and see the world, the more you desire to travel and see the world.
Anyway - that is all for now. My lengthy posts about my trip are officially over - I promise. Thanks for reading though - I do appreciate it ever so much. As I sit here now, in my living room in Portland, I cannot help but to feel happy and thankful for everything I have and for the life that is ahead of me.
Have a good one everybody!