Tuesday, November 06, 2007


Beast of Bodmin exposed

Maureen's touring suggestion for today was to hit some of the high-points of Bodmin Moor. At first I was on the lookout for Minions, which was easy enough, as I'm always on the look for them (you can never have enough). Once I reached that village, I pulled in at the carpark for The Hurlers a set of three stone circles - a little drab after all the henges and circles I've encountered in Ireland, Orkney and elsewhere. Our path intersected with a fellow heading further on to the Cheesewring stones. He told me that he'd been drawn back to this site after a recent sighting of a giant hand in the sky. I said that this was more constructive than moulding tors out of his mashed potato, but he let this go and went on about a giant angel in the sky. I didn't work out if the hand belonged to the angel, or was an independent manifestation. I was a little peturbed that he might have been looking for an Abrahamic sacrifice, so steered the conversation to safer ground and eventually left him with his thermos and sandwiches to contemplate the ley lines.

Just behind the Cheesewring, is a quarry where Cornish cheese was mined until a major seam was discovered further east at Cheddar Gorge granite was extracted for use in the construction of Tower Bridge and the Embankment in London. The name Cheesewring comes from the resemblance to a stack of "cheeses" - pulped apples in cloth bags from which cider is pressed. The stone stack is a natural formation of granite plates.

Ponies on the moor

We circled back through the moor to Belventor, home of the old Jamaica Inn, immortalised by Daphne du Maurier, but now hawking shelves of tat and dumauriana to coachloads of grey-haired tourists. It didn't seem a promising place for lunch, so I turned south past Dozmary Pool, which seemed a rather dull place for the Lady of the Lake to frequent, to try my chances in Polperro.

Hardly anything was open where I could get food, not even sandwiche's or panini's, just a teashop where I got a scone with a slab of butter with "Made with EU milk" stamped on the wrapper.

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