Part 1...A Sunday morning drive in Cornwall didn't disappoint...


As we approached St, Michaels and All Angels, Church of England, we were in awe of its beauty.
 Fascinating Fact of the Day About Michaelstow, Cornwall:
"Michaelstow is an attractive village and parish located about three miles south of Camelford in North Cornwall. The name means 'St Michael's Holy Place' and the parish church is dedicated to 'St Michael and All Angels.' The River Camel runs along the eastern edge of the parish. Helsbury Castle, an ancient, circular Iron Age hill fort lies half a mile to the north on Michaelstow Beacon."
_________________________________________

Yesterday morning, we were entirely out of photos.  With all the rainy days lately, we haven't been out as much as we would have liked.  Although it was dark and dreary with rain on the horizon, we decided to get out anyway.

A sign identifying this particular Church of England.
The goal was to explore a few nearby villages taking as many photos as we could before the rain started again.  Today, we're experiencing the same kind of weather with rain expected at any moment.

As I write here now, Tom is watching yesterday's Minnesota Viking game online.  For some reason, this morning the WiFi signal was too weak to allow him to stream the game.  Finally, he's been able to get it to work. 

The baptismal font.
The only reason we could think of for this difficulty was the Monday morning surge in use of the internet and the clouds affecting the satellite signal.  At times, in our travels, he experiences the same issues resulting in watching the game frustrating and time-consuming.

I postponed starting today's post to avoid using the WiFi, perhaps providing him with a better signal.  But, this rarely provides much improvement when writing on this template doesn't use much bandwidth (until I load photos).

Ornate wood carvings at the ends of the pews. 
Tom had seen an interesting photo online of a historic church in the nearby village of Michaelstow and searched for directions online.  But it didn't take more than a few seconds upon entering the tiny village of Michaelstow, to see the impressive church's historical tower, a true reflection of English history.

St. Michael and All Angels, Church of England was truly breathtaking. Unfortunately, we can't seem to find the exact date the church was built at any of the few online mentions of this particular church.  We suspect it may have been in the 13th century but we did find the following information from this site.
Pipe organ.
"Michaelstow (Cornish: Logmighal (village) and Cornish: Pluwvighal in Trygordh (parish)is a civil parish and village in north Cornwall, England, United Kingdom. The village is about three miles (5 km) south of Camelford. The hamlets of Fentonadle, Trevenning, and Treveighan are in the parish.

The civil parish of Michaelstow is in the deanery of Trigg Minor and Hundred of Lesnewth. It is named after 'St Michael's holy place' and the parish church is dedicated to St Michael and All Angels. There is fine tall Cornish cross in the churchyard. Its original location is unknown; until it was removed in 1883 it formed part of a series of steps up to the churchyard. Three more crosses are at Trevenning. The River Camel runs along its eastern edge and the surrounding parishes are Lanteglos-by-Camelford to the north, St Breward to the east, St Tudy to the south and St Teath to the west.
A side alter.
Helsbury Castle (Cornish: Kastel Bre Henlys, a castle on the hill of the old court'), an Iron Age hill fort, stands on Michaelstow Beacon half-a-mile north of the village."

Upon arrival at the church, we checked the vestibule to find the front door locked.  As we wandered about the property, we found a side door opened (referred to as the transept) and entered.  
The pipe organ is located at the end of this aisle.
Although it was Sunday morning, we didn't see any visitors or parishioners.  None the less, we entered, finding the interior not only historical but interesting in several ways.

No, it wasn't an elaborate decor as we often see in historical churches but it had several features that caught our eye which inspired us to take photos to share here today. We weren't disappointed and soon forgot about the cloudy day.
Stained glass windows at the alter.
We wandered through the cemetery reading headstones and searching for any relevant historical facts and dates.  In many countries, especially in small towns and villages, we've found ourselves wandering through cemeteries, searching for the unique and the unusual.

As for the church's build date, Tom found this information this morning that may explain it further.  Click here for more details:

MICHAELSTOW MICHAELSTOW SX 07 NE 6/113 Church of St Michael - 17.12.62 GV I

"Parish church. Possibly C13 origins enlarged in C15. Restored in 1826, in 1870-1889 by Messrs Hine and Odgers and in 1982. Stone rubble with granite quoins and molded granite plinth and strings to west tower. Slate roofs, nave, and chancel in one. Plan: Nave and chancel possibly with C13 origins with 4 bay north aisle and 5-bay south aisle added in C15. Circa C15 south porch and west tower. Exterior: Unbuttressed west tower of 3 stages with rectangular stair turret on the north. Battlemented parapets with crocketed finials surmounted by crosses. Molded stilted arch to the west door. C19 3 light west window and 2-light belfry openings with slate louvers. C19 tracery in the south aisle, simple 3-light Perpendicular tracery in chancel window and circa C15 3-light Perpendicular window with cusped heads at the east end of the north aisle. Piscina on the exterior of the north wall of the chancel. 3 C15 Perpendicular windows in north aisle and blocked 4-centred molded arch to north door. South porch has 2-centred hollow-chamfered arch with a sundial of 1684, C15 wagon roof and molded basket arch of Catacleuse stone with hollow chamfer and carved with floral motifs. Interior: Plaster walls. Unceiled C15 wagon roofs in nave and north and south aisles with carved ribs and wall plate partly restored. Particularly high quality carving in north aisle with evidence of pendants at the east end. C19 roof to chancel. 5-bay arcade to south aisle and 4-bay arcade to north aisle with granite type A (Pevsner) piers, molded bases, molded 4-centered arches and carved capitals of Caen stone and Polyphant stone. Piscina and credence in the chancel, circa C15 font and Royal Arms dated 1727, painted on timber board. Circa C15 bench ends rescued from Church of St Tudius, St Tudy. Other benches 1882. 2 commandment boards dated 1803 and signed Henry Hocken and Wm Symons, Churchwardens. Bell dated 1550. C16 and C17 memorials. Maclean, Sir John Parochial and Family History of the Deanery of Trigg Minor in the County of Cornwall 1879 Pevsner, N, and Radcliffe, E The Buildings of England, Cornwall 2nd edition, 1970 Church guide."
The side view of the historic church in Michaelstow, Cornwall.
We're looking forward to tomorrow's post when during Sunday's explorations, we happened upon a fantastic social experience.  More will follow!

Happy day!
______________________________________________

Photo from one year ago today, September 16, 2018:

Kudus are usually early morning visitors although we'll occasionally see them during the day and evening. For more photos, please click here.

Coffee or tea...What is the favorite beverage in the UK...a "cuppa" what?...


The driveway from our house to the narrow road.
Fascinating Fact of the Day About St. Teath, Cornwall*:
From this site: "The village sports an old clock tower in the centre near the church. It dates back to 1920 and was erected in memory of those who lost their lives in the First World War. The clock was built from Delabole slate donated by the quarry and constructed by volunteers to a plan by local mine manager, Mr. Oswald Swete. The four clock faces are driven by a weight powered mechanism which needs 'rewinding' every 6 days. The village has an interesting history. St Teath (from whom this village acquired its name) came over from Wales, with her sisters, to this area of Cornwall to bring Christianity to those living here. Since then the village has seen much change with the rise and fall of both mining and the railway. There is plenty of evidence of both around the area.  The oldest part of the village surrounds the village square – the focal point of the annual summer carnival, Remembrance day, Christmas lights and New Year Celebrations."
_________________________________

We often assume that the people of the United Kingdom are avid tea drinkers and, although they've heartily adopted coffee consumption, making it more prevalent than tea, they are still big tea drinkers.

At this site, there's a ticker running illustrating how many cups of tea are consumed in the UK each day.  It's shocking to see how fast the ticker runs into the millions of cups each day.  
Storage building on the farm.
Coffee consumption has grown in the UK over the years.  Here's an article from described here:
"Stereotypes suggest that Brits favour a builder’s brew over any other beverage but new figures released by the British Coffee Association (BCA) tell a different story.

Reliant on the caffeine spike a morning brew offers to face the day ahead, the BCA has revealed that the UK’s coffee consumption has soared to 95 million cups a day in 2018, up from 70 million in 2008. That’s an increase of 25 million over the last 10 years."


The exact stats on coffee versus tea consumption in the UK is confusing and elusive.  Some say coffee is more prevalent while others claim tea is the preferred beverage of choice.
Pygmy goats checking me out.  Next sunny day, Lorraine will take me out to meet them inside the fences.  Photos will follow.
"Part of the research, conducted by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR), included a survey of 2,000 adults in the UK It found that nearly a third of those surveyed said they didn’t drink coffee at all, while at the other end of the scale six percent admitted to drinking six cups or more a day, with the average person consuming around two cups a day.

"Interestingly, it also revealed that 65 percent of coffee is drunk at home, 25 percent at work or while studying, and the rest is consumed in shops, bars, and restaurants. "In the last decade we’ve gone from a country of tea-sippers who enjoy the occasional instant coffee, to a nation of seasoned coffee connoisseurs exploring a large variety of roast and ground blends,” said Chris Stemman, Executive Director of the BCA."
Pretty house in Michaelstow.
In our experience while in the frequent presence of Brits over the years of world travel, we've seen tea as the preferred beverage.  But then, many of our British friends are regular coffee drinkers.  So, who's to say they haven't adopted the passion for coffee drinking so common in the US and many other countries throughout the world?

Tea's illustrious influence in the UK has led to a variety of teas from around the world but there are certain teas the British favor.  Favorite teas include: 
Most Popular Type of Tea in England
  • Black Tea. Black Tea, of course, tops the list, mostly taken with milk, mostly in tea bag form
  • Earl Grey. Earl Grey was believed to be named after a gift of tea from China was presented to the then UK Prime Minister Charles Grey in 1830
  • Green tea
  • Herbal teas
  • Oolong
  • Others

Cornfield in the neighborhood.
Surprisingly, we don't see a wide variety of teas at the supermarkets, not nearly as many as I'd seen in the US many moons ago.  As for coffee, many Brits drink instant coffee.

Over the past seven months since I had open heart surgery I've avoided drinking coffee.  I found the caffeine seemed to make my heart race.  Instead, I've been drinking one cup of green tea (includes caffeine) each morning, followed by herbal teas later in the day.  I've yet to find a herbal tea that I love.

But, then again I was always both a tea and coffee drinker starting with coffee in the morning and having tea in the afternoon, caffeine never seeming to be an issue.  Tom started drinking coffee only since 2004.  He now drinks it without sugar and uses coconut cream instead of milk or cream.
Old building/barn converted to a house with solar panels.
Speaking of milk, here's a morsel:
“The research celebrates Britain as a nation of tea drinkers, with a few surprising results like almost one in five putting the milk in first," said Emma Stanbury from Arla B.O.B milk which commissioned the study. “And with more than fifty shades of tea, everyone's favourite is a little different."

When we grocery shopped a few days ago I decided to try something I'd never consider in the past...make instant caffeine-free coffee adding "double cream."  Much to my surprise, it tastes delicious and I believe this will be my new morning beverage.  I'm very enthused being able to have coffee in the mornings when Tom's coffee always smells so good.

Later in the day, I'll have a few cups of green tea including each day around 4 pm, tea time minus the biscuits.  It's not quite "high tea" but definitely a treat at that time of day, now that we're no longer doing "happy hour." 

This morning, we took on an amazing drive in the area and came across some fantastic sites and a "people" experience we can't wait to share tomorrow with many photos.  Please check back. 
 
Enjoy your Sunday!  Have a "cuppa" as the British say!
______________________________________________
Photo from one year ago today, September 15, 2018:
This is the same family with seven chicks we'd seen a few months ago. For more photos, please click here.

A day at the movies...The Downton Abbey movie...No spoilers...

In August 2014, we held our breath as we approached Highclare Castle, home of the famed BBC Downton Abbey TV series.  No interior photos were allowed.  
Fascinating Fact of the Day About Wadebridge:"Wadebridge is a popular town in north Cornwall, very well situated for visitors intending to walk the Camel Trail. The most notable historical building in Wadebridge is not actually a building, its the remarkable Old Bridge built by Reverend Thomas Lovibond in 1460. The bridge stretches 320 feet across the Camel, with a grand total of 17 arches supporting it."
_____________________________________

Image result for the downton abbey movie
The poster for the movie.
With numerous trailers shown online and promoted throughout England, we thought it would be befitting for us to go to the movies to see yesterday's first release of the classic movie TV show, Downton Abbey.
The Towne Centre in Wakebridge.
While living in many countries throughout the world, we'll find a movie that was made locally and make a point of downloading and watching it, including those with subtitles.  
Captured on a walk on the boulevard.
Primarily, our objective is to see authentic scenes of places we may like to visit while there or to get a greater understanding of history and culture.  Many well-made movies seem capable of accomplishing this to some degree.
The 89-year-old Regal Cinema in downtown Wakebridgde.
Having watched all 52 episodes of Downton Abbey over six seasons, all of which were since we began traveling the world.  An episode would air and a few days later we could download it, saving it to our hard drive and watching it at our convenience, always in the evenings after dinner, as a special treat.
The cost for one adult ticket GBP 7.30, US $9.13, about the same price or slightly less than in the US from what we recall.
The series was so inspiring in 2014 we booked a tour to the filming location for the series, the Highclere Castle, which is shown today as our main photo, which we'd taken on that special day.  Click here to see our post from August 21, 2014.
The concession stand.  There wasn't anything I could order, as usual.
When we'd heard so much about the movie being released we thought it would be a treat to see it on its opening day while in England on Friday, September 13, 2019.  (The release in the US and other countries is on September 20, 2019, one week later).
Tom purchased a bottle of soda and popcorn as shown below.
We searched online to see if there was a movie theatre in this part of Cornwall where we could see the movie.  The Regal Theatre in Wadebridge, a 30-minute drive which was the most convenient location. 

The 89-year-old movie theatre was a site to see in itself with a bit of its history as follows:
The Regal situated at the end of The Platt in Wadebridge Cornwall was built by the Pope family of Padstow and opened its doors for the first time in January 1931. Several local owners operated the cinema under its initial name of the “Cinedrome."
Our view of the screen from our good seats.
When we arrived an hour earlier than the start of the movie to ensure we'd get tickets and good seats to find the ticket office closed until 1:30 pm, we wandered about the cozy village, packed with tourists and locals.  

As it turned out we were the first to buy tickets and find great seats, smack dab in the middle several rows back from the screen.  In no time at all, move moviegoers arrived but hardly filled in the good-sized theatre. We'd expected the 2 pm matinee would attract a number of the locals but it didn't.
Tom had to order his popcorn in a  bag.  The only freshly popped corn they had was "sweet popcorn" which he doesn't like.  The only unsweetened popcorn offered is in a bag as shown.
Need I say, we loved the movie and giggled over having seen the magnificent castle on the big screen, five years later from our own face to face viewing.  We won't share any details about the movie.  All we can say is if you liked the TV series, most likely you'll enjoy the movie as well.
When we left the theatre, we walked past a creek with ducks.
After the movie ended we walked the short distance to the Co-Op Supermarket to shop for the final upcoming week in St. Teath, Cornwall.  We leave here in six days and have loved every moment in this scenic part of the country.  Cornwall has truly pleased and surprised us.

May your Saturday be as pleasant as ours, on a sunny day in the countryside.
______________________________________________

Photo from one year ago today, September 14, 2018:

This a white-crested seedeater.  For more photos, please click here.

Contemplation...Off and about today...The last of the Port Isaac photos...


A gorgeous countryside view as we drove toward Port Isaac from St. Teath (pronounced, "breath").
Fascinating Fact of the Day About Port Isaac:
"Port Isaac's pier was constructed during the reign of Henry VIII. A 1937 history said, "...Tudor pier and breakwater have now yielded to a strong new sea-wall balanced by an arm on the opposite side of the cove, and we do not doubt that the fishermen sleep more soundly in their beds on stormy nights." The village centre dates from the 18th and 19th centuries, from a time when its prosperity was tied to local coastal freight and fishing. The port handled cargoes of coal, wood, stone, ores, limestone, salt, pottery and heavy goods which were conveyed along its narrow streets. Small coastal sailing vessels were built below Roscarrock Hill."
_____________________________________
Often times, we strive to share the details of our daily lives, however simple and uneventful or, exciting and heart-pounding.  In either case, we share our dreams and hopes for future travel.

Over the past several months with so much up in the air, the future unknown, our dreams were on hold while we tentatively booked only a few plans for the future.  We'd lost so much when we had to cancel many plans losing tens of thousands of dollars in deposits we'd paid and flights we'd booked, most of which was non-refundable.

The tour I longed for the most, the comprehensive safari in Kenya for exquisite luxury tented camps and hotels including Little Governor's Camp, Giraffe Manor, and the Maasai Mara, (where we'd been on safari in 2013) had to be canceled.  We were scheduled to leave South Africa on February 15th (when our visas ended), three days after I had the bypass surgery.  We weren't able to leave until three months later when I was cleared to fly.
Port Isaac ocean views are stunning.
And then, three months later while attempting to leave the country, accompanied by copies of medical documents and doctor's letters, we were determined to have immigration accept our reasons for the "overstay."

Alas, they did not do so and we were labeled in their system as "undesirables" and told we couldn't return to the country for five years.  However, we had the right to request a waiver based on the circumstances, by filing copious documents with their "overstay" department at immigration.  

We filed the documents well within the required seven day period and have inquired numerous times to no avail.  It appears our only recourse is to hire a South African immigration lawyer which we are considering.
The Cornwall area is known for its craggy cliffs.
We'd be less concerned about getting back into South Africa sooner than the five-year ban, but we have a cruise booked from Lisbon, Portugal to Capetown, South Africa embarking on November 10, 2020, a cruise we've been excited to experience and for which we could lose the deposit.

This particular cruise with Azamara cruise line has an itinerary we'll most likely never be able to experience in the future, an itinerary that may eventually be discontinued.  

It sails along the western coast of Africa with ports of call to include: Casablanca, Morocco; Agadir, Morocco; Canary Islands; Banjul, Gambia;
Abidjan, Ivory Coast; Takoradi, Ghana; Luanda, Angola; Walvis Bay, Namibia; Luderitz, Namibia, and then to Capetown where we plan to stay for three days.
Access to the ocean for swimming and launching small boats.
Of the total 18 months, we've spent in South Africa, we'd never visited Capetown when we didn't want to leave Marloth Park any more than we'd have to for an "immigration stamp" allowing us to stay 90 more days.  

Twice during this last 15-month stay in Marloth Park, we flew to Zambia and then visited Botswana and, Zimbabwe returning to the airport known as Nelspruit/Mpumalanga/Kruger, to have our visas stamped once again. 

The second time we made this trip we were told we wouldn't be allowed another extension unless we applied with Home Affairs immigration department.  We did and were granted an extension until the above mentioned February 15, 2019,  three days after I had the dreadful surgery resulting in numerous complications. 
A typical narrow road in Port Isaac.
However, our comprehensive May 2019 request for a waiver for the five-year ban and our status as "undesirables" has been ignored.  We've decided if we don't receive a result by this November, we'll contact an immigration attorney in South Africa.

Ah, those who think that a life of world travel is easy is kidding themselves.  Sure, a one or two year adventure may be relatively uneventful, other than the joys of the travel experiences.  

But, now, almost seven years later, we accept the harsh reality that life is complicated and may deviate from the desired path over which we choose, regardless of all of our best intentions.
A typical narrow road in Port Isaac.
Oddly, even to us, we still feel passionate and hopeful for the future of our ongoing world travels.  We also realize that at some point in the future we will have to stop traveling, health and age being the relevant factors.

In the interim, we may have had to refocus our activities to accommodate my "new normal" but our hearts and spirits stay strong and motivated to continue on.

Please continue on with us...
______________________________________________

Photo from one year ago today, September 13, 2018:
This could be two females with this male lion or a female and a young male who's mane has yet to develop. There's a male behind the male in front.  For more photos, please click here.

More on Port Isaac...Known as Portwenn in the Doc Martin TV series...Healing...


St. Peter church in Port Isaac.  (Too bad the power lines obstruct the view.  I tried removing them but doing so hindered the photo).
Fascinating Fact of the Day About Port Isaac:
"The small vibrant fishing village of Port Isaac is one of Cornwall's most well-known and popular holiday destinations. The picturesque fishing village lies on a stunning stretch of coastline, midway between Polzeath (and the Rumps headland to the west) and the ever-popular village of Tintagel Much of the coastline and surrounding countryside of Port Isaac is designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and Heritage Coastline. Port Isaac, was a busy coastal port from the Middle Ages to the mid 19th. Century when it was an active harbour where cargoes like stone, coal, timber, and pottery were loaded and unloaded."
_____________________________________

Again, it's raining which is expected to continue throughout the day and perhaps again tomorrow.  As much as we'd like to get out sightseeing, it's relatively fruitless on these rainy days and on these narrow winding roads.  


It's impossible to stop on the side of the road for photos when there aren't any shoulders on the roads or in the small towns we encounter along the way.  Neither of us can conceive of hiding under raincoats with the camera in a plastic bag to get what might be a poor photo anyway.  We wait patiently for sunny days.
Expansive views of the English countryside near Port Isaac.
In the interim, we continue to busy ourselves on the farm, taking care of household tasks, laundry, cooking, and continuing research for the future.  In a mere 42 days, we'll be boarding a cruise in Southampton, England with an itinerary that takes us to a few new (to us) ports of call.  We always enjoy a transatlantic cruise.

Each day, I continue to improve in baby steps after stopping those three awful drugs.  It's only been 17 days since I stopped the drug, Bisoprolol, that caused me the most side effects including horrible pain in my arms and legs as well as intermittent breathing issues which may continue for months after stopping two of the three drugs.  
Blue sky, blue sea, and craggy cliffs.
Yesterday, was the first day I had no breathing issues whatsoever.  But this morning I noticed it had returned.  There's not much I can do to stop it.  Any type of activity doesn't seem to make it worse, such as walking and stairs.  

As a result, the breathing issue is not exercise-induced which gives me peace of mind that its not a heart-related issue.  In reading the literature that accompanied these drugs, breathing problems are common for a period of time (as much as one year) following the weaning off Amiodarone and Bisoprolol.    
Port Isaac welcomes visitors.  But, we doubt the local residents are happy about the influx of tourists since Doc Martin began in 2004, other than those benefiting from tourist purchases.
If I had any other symptoms, I'd go to a doctor but otherwise, I feel quite good, seven months today since the surgery.  Once we get to the US and are in Arizona, most likely I go to the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale to be checked.
A typical road in Port Isaac which we could access by car.
Today, I'm busy chopping and dicing to make low carb taco salad.  We have delicious leftover pot roast which I'll shred with seasonings for Tom's salad and I've made a tuna salad which I'll stuff into both halves of a small avocado for my dinner, with a side salad including onions, celery, grape tomatoes, sliced green olives, and lettuce.

Tomorrow, we have an exciting afternoon activity planned (exciting to us, anyway) which we'll share after the experience with photos.
The Old School Hotel and Restaurant in Port Isaac, located in the center of town.
Have a lovely evening wherever you may be!  We thank each and every one of you for following our world travel story, almost seven years in the making.
______________________________________________
Photo from one year ago today, September 12, 2018:
Lounging poolside.  For more photos, please click here.

Port Isaac, known as Portwenn, location for filming "Doc Martin" TV series...What a site to see!

As we approached Port Isaac, the filming site for TV series, Doc Martin, the scenery took our breath away.
Fascinating Fact of the Day About Port Isaac, Cornwall*:
From this site: "Port Isaac is a small fishing village on the Atlantic coast of north Cornwall, England, United Kingdom. The nearest towns are Wadebridge and Camelford, both ten miles away. Port Gaverne, commonly mistaken to be part of Port Isaac, is a nearby hamlet that has its own history."
_________________________________

We began watching the first 62 episodes of the popular British TV Series, Doc Martin over eight seasons which ended.  Based on popular demand, the series was renewed for season 9 which begins on TV here in the UK on September 25th.

We'll be able to watch the first four episodes while we're here in England on the TV and will stream the remaining four episodes after we get settled into our next location.
Although beaches and ocean access is abundant in Cornwall, the constant cool weather may prevent locals and tourists from spending time at the beaches.
Doc Martin, in an odd way, reminds me of the US TV series Seinfeld, in that it was referred to as the "show about nothing." Doc Martin has this same characteristic.  

It's somewhat of a mindless show requiring little contemplation but the subtlety so prevalent with the British, along with their typical sense of humor, often "tongue in cheek" makes this show a gem.

We fell in love with all the quirky characters including Doc Martin, who is masterfully played by well-known British actor Martin Clunes who has had quite an illustrious career.  For more on this series, please click here.
Not only are the ocean views outstanding, but the rolling patchwork countryside also has much to offer.
The series is masterfully described as follows:
"Is there a dyspeptic doctor in the house? Successful surgeon Dr. Martin Ellingham abruptly leaves his London practice to become general practitioner in the sleepy fishing village of Portwenn, where he spent the holidays during his youth. But his luxury car and lavish wardrobe immediately rub the locals the wrong way, and once they get a load of his abrasive attitude and lack of bedside manner, he quickly alienates most of the townsfolk."

It was during our world travels in 2012 that we found we could relax and get out of our heads if we watched a few favorite shows when we didn't have evening plans either on my laptop or on a flat-screen TV (if available) using our HDMI cord.

With the inability to access some US TV series for streaming, we found we could more readily download many popular British shows.  One of the British shows that set us on this path (along with "Downton Abbey") was "Luther," a gripping police drama starring Idris Alba, a fantastic actor.  From there, we were hooked.
There are numerous shops, restaurants, and tourist-related businesses lining the streets of Port Isaac.
At least half of the shows we watched over the past seven years have been British-made with many of our friends from the UK recommending a variety of shows which we ultimately enjoyed.

One of the reasons we chose to stay in St. Teath, Cornwall was due to its close proximity to the location where Doc Martin has been filmed.  With the massive number of tourists we knew would be in Port Isaac, we weren't interested in staying in a holiday home in the sleepy town.

Yesterday, we witnessed an unbelievable tourist infusion which must be difficult for the local residents until it slows down during the colder winter months.  We ran into a few difficulties once we arrived after a 25-minute drive from our holiday home.
A pair of seagulls resting atop a parked car.
One was the fact there were virtually no available parking spaces.  If we waited at the few parking lots close to the town, we may have been able to eventually get a spot.  

But the bigger issue was "me."  Should we have been able to find a parking place in one of the lots (nothing available in the center of town), I would not have been able to make the long walk up and down the steep hills required to get into the town.

After all, its only been a few weeks since I could walk without excruciating pain.  It will take time for me to build the strength and muscle tone in order to be able to tackle such a trek.  
From this site:  Looking at Port Isaac first, it is a true commercial fishing harbour from yesteryear, when it was the centre of attention for the Pilchard industry. In the heyday of Blue shark fishing from the south coast, it was nothing for sharking enthusiasts to drive to the north coast just to get some tubs of Pilchard for use as rubby dubby, as the oil exuded by this small fish is second to none when attracting predators. The pier at the end was built during the reign of Henry the Eighth ,and while the town dates back 700 years, it was during the 18th and 19th centuries that the town’s prosperity was assured with the handling of ocean-bound cargo like salt, coal, wood and of course all manner of sea fish, crabs and lobsters. Back in 1869, the Port Isaac lifeboat was established with a lifeboat called “Sarah and Richard” that had to be dragged through the narrow streets for launching. In the 1960s the RNLI put in the inshore lifeboat, and since 1967 it has the new”D” inshore model. Today, the picturesque narrow streets and alleys are home to cake shops, souvenirs, and eateries, with general tourism, boosted to celebrity status with programs such as “Poldark”,” Saving Grace” and “Doc Martin”. Out in Port Isaac Bay there are reputed to have been over 1000 wrecks, a testament to the winter, and sometimes summer storms, that rumble in off the Atlantic. Many of these would have been sailing ships at the mercy of the wind, whereas today, the age of motor power sees far fewer mishaps.
I am working on it daily with all the hills we encounter when we're out and the walking around the house and ground along with the 15 to 20 flights of steps I do intentionally each day going up and downstairs for added exercise.  

When we couldn't find a parking spot and realized that most of the buildings shown in Doc Martin series were only accessible on foot, we resigned ourselves to the reality that the only photos we'd be able to take were those we could manage from the car.

On a few occasions, Tom was able to find a place to pull over for a minute or two while I got out of the car to take photos of the ocean and massive cliffs in the area.
This is one of our favorite ocean views in Port Isaac.
After driving around for an hour or more, we finally headed out of Port Isaac on the road to explore the countryside a little further. It was a pleasant drive.
Although we were disappointed not to have been able to capture some of the photos we'd intended, we had a good time exploring, as usual especially on a sunny day.  More Port Isaac photos will follow in the next few days.

Today, its raining again and we'll stay put while conducting research for future travels.  Right now, we feel we'd like to wait until we get to the US in 58 days, where we'll be staying for two months until we head to India.

Our heartfelt prayers and memories for those in the US who lost loved ones during the 9/11 attack, 18 years ago as of today.
______________________________________________
Photo from one year ago today, September 11, 2018:
Many species can share a space in harmony.  For more photos, please click here.