Sunday 6 July
I wake again with the sun streaming through the blinds and the inside of the van heating up like an oven. Because of our lazy day yesterday the dogs are also nagging a little earlier, so by 8.30am I am on the throne sorting my guts out, I'll share the view with you.
The dog walk field behind us is busy, and which ever direction you look there are middle aged men and women with a little black bag covering their hand, stooping down to pick up the deposits that their 4 legged furry friends have so thoughtfully left for them.
Wait for it ............. I skip breakfast this morning and make do with a cup of tea, over which herself announces that she would like to visit a market today. As the saying goes, Google is yewer friend, and Google soon informs me that Cornwall does not really do markets, loads of car boot sales but markets are few and far between.
One does catch my eye though, and that is the Cornish Markets near St Austell, some 55 miles back up country. After a quick scrub up with dettol and a wire brush we are fit to go, and with the dogs already waiting in Miranda's boot we make tracks.
We pull up outside and it's immediately obvious that this place is vast and has numerous car parks. I spy a sign that forbids dogs so hunt for a space with some shade. I shoe horn Miranda into a suitable space under the biggest tree we could find, open all the windows 4" and the sunroof to full, leave the dogs a few bowls of water and head off.
The place is like an Aladdin's cave and sells all sorts. We do some gift shopping as well as picking up some pasties for lunch. Conscious that the sun may move and expose the car we try not to stay too long. I am relieved as my wallet has been assaulted by herself.
After giving the dogs a stretch we head off in search of somewhere for lunch on the way into Mevagissey. A slight detour takes us to The Lost Gardens of Heligan where we picnic out of Miranda's boot Twickers stylee in the vast grass car park taking in the glorious views of the rolling countryside while the dogs run free.
We take the coast road through the very pretty Portmellon before winding our way through the very narrow streets of Mevagissey towards the car parks. Once our King's ransom is fed into the pay and display machine we lead the dogs and head off to have a mooch. We've been here many times before but never tire of the place, but for some reason with all the traffic I had a senior moment and took a wrong turn and we headed away from the harbour area and got lost. I had steamed on ahead of Herself and took a left then another left and we arrived back at the car park.
Herself took me by surprise and didn't call me any names at all. She was fine about it .... most strange. We set off again and this time made all the right turns through the maze of narrow streets and I watched on as some bloke in a hired Luton Transit lost his deposit as he scraped the body along the overhang of a building at one of the numerous pinch points. Suffice to say my day was going better than his.
The harbour opened up before us and we bag an empty bench to watch the world go by, soak up the view and watch as a seal surfaced in the water just a few dozen yards in front of us.
This is bliss and Herself keeps asking me if I'd like an ice cream. I refuse a few times until I eventually cave in and have a coronary in a cone. I take my first lick and am in heaven, when Herself moves in close to me and says "You know that street we went down earlier ..... well there was a lovely toe ring in the window of that jewellers."
I bloody knew there was something up ... no name calling when we got lost ..... I hadn't left her at all, she'd stopped to look in the window ..... then coaxing me to have an ice cream ..... fair play, there's no flies on herself, and if there were they'd be paying rent! After agreeing that she can have it as her birthday pressie I am rushed into finishing my cone and dragged off to purchase the desired item.
We arrive and I'm shown the one she wants on the tray, I go into the shop and ask if I can buy it and the lady goes to get it. There are no flies on this one either as she beckons herself to come into the shop, dogs and all, and proceeds to show Herself a selection of other toe rings until Herself changes her mind.
I go up to the till and get mugged as she rings in a number that is significantly north of the price of the original toe ring that Herself fancied. Cunning bitch.
My wallet has been assaulted big time and I announce it's time to leave. We make tracks back west and chill on site for an hour or so before realising we have nothing in the van that we could make an evening meal out of. Herself uses a pressure washer on me in an effort to clean me up and we head out for a meal at the nearby Whitesands Lodge which has a seafood restaurant attached to it.
The food was divine, Herself had the Fisherman's Pie and I had the King Scallops, and I can honestly say that it was some of the best seafood I have ever had.
We stay up late watching the sun set before tuning into watch shite on TV.
Monday 7 July
We wake to cloudy skies this morning but the dogs are in no rush to go out so I guzzle a few gallons of tea until they start to nag at 11am. After a few laps of the field I throw some bacon on the Weber for breakfast before Herself announces that we need to go shopping for provisions. It starts to rain a little as we set off in the general direction of Penzance.
They've built a Sainsburys down here since last year and Herself has been nagging to go there. I'm not in the place long before I start to feel very uncomfortable. Have you seen the price they charge for stuff in there?
"Do you want this?"
"Do you want that?"
"Do you want this then?"
Despite my very best efforts not to buy anything the cashier cheerfully asks for over £70 for some groceries that barely cover the bottom of the trolley. I resist the urge to punch her lights out, and no matter how much she nags and coaxes, there is no way that Herself is getting me anywhere near that place again.
While loading up Miranda I notice that one of her front tyres is in a bad way, a very bad way, and is somewhat illegal. The other front one isn't much better and I now know why she felt a little lively round the bends the other night in the rain.
I've seen both an ATS and Kwikfit around here but have no intention of being mugged by either of those gits so get onto Google. I ring a few local boys and get some decent prices, but neither have Miranda's size in stock. I ring Trevedra to see if they can recommend anyone local. The garage at St Burynan says they cannot possibly do anything until next week (it's only Monday mind) and another in St Just says he has better things to do with his time. As he tells me this I look around and take in the view of his assistant lounging in an old car seat throwing nuts and bolts into a tub on the floor 5ft in front of him out of boredom!
Defeated, I ring up the tyre guy in Newlyn and order a set to be fitted tomorrow. Miranda will not go far today.
I get into JFO mode back at the van and we dine in style. My Kitchen Rules has nothing on us. For starters we had cockles with bacon and anchovies, for mains Herself had trout and I had Langostines, and for desert I had a cream tea, Herself does not do desert.
With dishes cleared we facetimed the kids and the olds before heading over to Sennen to watch the sunset.
A perfect end to the day
Tuesday 8 July
I wake from my deep slumber slowly and gently as the early morning sun sneaks into the van through the gaps behind the black out blinds. I turn over and give my beloved a gentle kiss on the cheek as she gets up out of bed to put the kettle on.
Nah, scratch that. I am woken harshly and suddenly by Herself with a punch to the shoulder with her barking at me to turn off the bloody alarm which is going off only 8" from my head. I'd not heard it. We have an early start today and it feels like the middle of the night even though the sun is high in the sky.
By 8.15am we've managed to peel ourselves off the sheets and Herself goes about making the bed while I light a flame under the kettle. We are both showered and out of the van by 9am and eagerly making our way over to the Sennen Farmer's Market. We get there much earlier than last year and all the stalls are well stocked with good quality, fresh local produce.
We come away with our bags straining under the weight of a few pasties, some lamb chops, some new potatoes, some coleslaw, 1/2 dozen eggs, some doggie treats and a blue glass thing that Herself had to have but does not know what to do with yet.
With the dogs walked on the cliff tops we pause briefly to watch a para glider shit out of jumping from the cliff before returning to the van to drop off Herself and the dogs before I make my way in Miranda to get her seriously illegal and dangerous front tyres replaced. I swing into the service yard and am happy to see Miranda's new tyres sat there blocking the access to the garage. They are not small.
This is not how I would ideally like to spend a morning of my holidays, but to be honest they were cheaper than PC would have done them at home, and while tyre fitting is not rocket science, they were very efficient and did a good job. In no time at all I was heading back to site with a big £240 hole in our holiday spends budget.
The weather is due to turn nasty for a bit today and it starts to rain lightly as I pull back onto site. We throw a few pasties down our necks before heading back out for the day, pausing briefly to admire the mahoosive Fifth Wheeler that has pulled onto site.
First off we make for Porthgwarra. I've Google earthed it, and it looks like a nice remote sandy cove with not much there to attract people. As we made our way through the narrow lanes we met a '14 plate Mitsubishi joking 4x4, with a twisted and haggard old witch behind the driving seat. She stopped in a passing place a full 2 feet from the hedge and refused to move. I then had to squeeze Miranda's considerable bulk through the remaining space. It was cm by cm and still the old witch would not move closer to the hedge, afraid of damaging her paintwork. Our wing mirrors briefly touched, and I'm talking a fag paper's width here. She winds down her window, starts to scream obscenities at me before showing me her vast repertoire of hand gestures as she sped off.
They are harvesting spuds down here at the moment and as we rounded a corner I spotted about a bucket full that had spilled from one of the trailers. I said to Herself "I'm having them on the way back."
The narrow lanes descended to the cove at Porthgwarra, and it looked lovely, except there were quite a few people about and there was also a rather uninviting sign informing all that dogs were not welcome. We didn't stay.
As approached the section of road with the free spuds on an arsehole came up behind me rather rapidly and proceeded to tailgate me through the bends. I pull into a passing place to let him past. Herself asked why, as usually I would just drive slower to annoy him. I explain it's all part of the master plan, as I could hardly stop in the road to pick up the spuds with him behind me.
I'm getting in the zone now as we approach, I'm checking my mirrors, great no cars behind me, and doing my stretching exercises. as we round the last bend I can see my prize still sitting at the end of the road. I start to slow down and ask Herself to pass me a bag. Then he did it, the barsteward swerved and ran over the said pile of spuds, squashing most of them to a pulp and sending the rest rolling to their fate. The git!!
The red mist comes down and I floor it till I'm about 5ft from his rear end, and stay there till Herself twists my nipples until I stop.
The heavens opened chucked buckets at us from above. Not to worry though, Miranda has a set of brand new boots on so I am throwing her through the bends with gay abandon.
We come up behind this van, and I take a photo to send to Mr Shag saying "Saw this and thought of you." The reply is immediate, and I didn't know Mr Shag knew so many swear words.
We stop briefly at the Polygon Vineyard in Penzance to partake in some tasting before deciding on a few bottles of sparkling cider and then moving on to take a look at Porthleven.
Finding a parking spot was a challenge, once that was out of the way we spend a few hours having a nose around while Tali did his very best to yank my arm out of it's socket.
We stop for a drink on the quayside before making tracks northwards and Healey's Cyder Farm, where Ronnie wants us to pick up some more Rattler for him.
Back on site we throw together our tea from ingredients we purchased this morning, an easy one tonight, just lamb chops and real home made chips.
Tired tonight and struggled to summon up the energy to sit outside in this to watch the sun set over the Atlantic.