Posted by: Peace Day Pilgrim | July 29, 2009

Day 17: The falcons are guiding me now

Porthcothan to Newquay, 11.1 miles.

The rain is back again and it looks like for the duration. Light breakfast with Tam, Willow, Martha and Beck and gave the rain a chance to ease up a little. Howard had left early for breakfast to cycle to Padstow. I hope the roads were ok for him. Thank you to Howard and Tam for their support.

Gore-tex on and wind blowing hard. The North-Easterlies have reverted back to the prevailing South-Westerly direction so are now in my face. A simple change in direction changes everything. I headed up the southern side of Porthcothan and through the Porth Mear valley to Bedruthan Steps where there is a National Trust cafe. Thank you to Laura, Naomi, Sophie, Scott, Lucy, Norma and Gonzo for filling my belly with brunch and sorting out some food to take with me.

Coming down into Mawgan Porth I was head down when a man came running across the road calling after me. It turned out that he had heard about me on Radio 2 or somewhere similar and was amazed to see me walking past. He insisted in buying me a coffee which I accepted. I met up with his three holiday companions and chatted about the issues. Thank you to Angus, Steve and the two Ashley’s for the coffee and discussion and also for taking me up to The Park which is now becoming an Eco-holiday village. I will talk with Keri Skinner soon about what they are doing there but from what I saw with the boys it looked great with solar water heaters etc. Thank also to Vic for her kind support and offer of food which my need did not require.

Pushing on towards Newquay was now quick. Newquay is now the biggest town on the north coast of Cornwall and I think Devon but I may be wrong. The topography is awesome but the developments that line the northern side leave a little to be desired. Is it that hard to insist on aesthetic architectural design that fits the landscape? Anyway, I began to think of where I would try for accomodation and at the same time a little falcon came out of nowhere, flew in front of me and landed on the lamp-post in front of me. It was strange to see a bird of prey so close to a built up area so I stood for a moment. It called out. I smiled. It then flew on and landed on the next lamp-post towards a different direction than I had been walking in. I decided to follow it. Not sure why, it just made sense. When I got to where it was sitting and looking down at me it flew to the next lamp-post and looked back. This made laugh and I have to admit intrigued me. I carried on walking and a few seconds later, the bird swooped down and flew across a small patch of grass and landed on a lamp-post right outside the doors to the Best Western hotel. Now, I don’t want people to think I am losing my mind on this walk but to some extent it tickled my fancy that this little bird was showing me where I should try to stay amongst hundreds of hotels, b&bs, stag and hen-dos. I went straight inside without thinking and asked the lady at reception. Julia turned out to love the idea and although she had no management to check with, gave me the keys to room 342 without a second thought. I am sure the bird was a coincidence….or was it?

I was smiling for the rest of the day and it gave me a boost when I was handing out leaflets in town.

More anon.


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