The ordinary stuff around here is pretty extraordinary when you step back and think about it. I’ve seen some pretty interesting places elsewhere on the planet and, I think wherever you find yourself there can be beauty. That said, even the best places on earth have their downsides. Thankfully the shortcomings of living in Truro are massively outweighed by our remarkable location and the “city” that has developed here (arguably is still developing).
Truro is a river port and an historic one at that. A once wealthy hub for mining money with an oversized, relatively new cathedral defining and dominating a little river basin town. The port lives on even though the mining is long gone. Occasionally, on a high spring tide, you can see a surprisingly large ship navigate its way up the narrow winding channel and turn before loading with scrap metal.
There are few places I feel more at home than when I’m out on the water. Whether windsurfing, kiting, paddling a board or as we did this weekend, cruising up the Truro river aboard Enterprise III. There’s a consistency to the scenery, a reassuring calm when you’re up river and often a short, steep wind blown chop once you get out into the wider, more exposed expanse of The Carrick Roads.
The Enterprise boats travel from Truro to Trelissick Gardens, St. Mawes and Falmouth (and luckily back too)! They are elegant, cornflower blue, timber passenger craft of a bygone day that steam with purpose, back and forth, loaded with hardy sightseers, taking in the vistas of passing creeks and tumble down boat houses. They are part of the Fal furniture and I’ve watched them chug by since I was a boy. They sail in pretty much any weather so, if you’re out windsurfing in a force six, their passing wake is regular and provides a welcome ramp if you time it right. Regardless of the conditions or the season there will always be somebody up on deck to give you a wave.
They are elegant, cornflower blue, timber passenger craft of a bygone day that steam with purpose, back and forth, loaded with hardy sightseers, taking in the vistas of passing creeks and tumble down boat houses.
On Sunday, although the breeze was fresh, the trip was warm and pleasant. There’s always somewhere on the boat that you can shelter from the wind, you just have to think it through and only head for the upper deck if you are looking for lung-full’s of the fresh stuff. On the way from Truro to Falmouth Claire, Katie, Tom and I sat in the stern enjoying the sunshine. The kids enjoyed seeing the massive ships laid up in the deep sheltered anchorages up river. There’s currently a survey ship and a crane barge, I guess waiting for their next deployment.
The kids adore trying to spot pirates out on the river and have really started to take an interest in boats since we watched the film of Swallows and Amazons recently! With many traditional working boats and other sailing craft, there are lots of opportunities for me to point out PIRATES ON THE STARBOARD BOW!
Our destination was Falmouth and the busy port there. The Enterprise steams in past Pendennis Superyachts and past the RFA Argus, a regular in the port, and pulls alongside The Prince Of Wales Pier. From here we wander the bohemian streets of Falmouth Town until our eyes eventually come to rest on the lunch menu at The Stable. The Stable is a trendy pizza type restaurant occupying the former Custom House. A building that is steeped in the history of the port and must have witnessed so much. The food is great (although I ordered the pizza with the 3 chilli symbol not realising that their scale doesn’t go up to 5 like mine!) nevertheless, delicious, just hot! Numerous pints of ale were required to keep things cool. No harm done! Soon it was time to retrace our steps and head back to Truro. Belly full and cheeks rosy. Another great day out, right on our doorstep!