|On the South Coast Trail heading to Penzance|
We would do the walk to raise money for the Sarcoma Foundation in the hopes their research would eventually find a cure for thousands of people battling sarcoma cancer, including – and especially – our 27-year old son, Carey. In the end, we only managed 47 miles but have raised over $1,500 for this most worthy cause.
|St. Ives our first evening in Cornwall|
Tourist season hadn’t started yet (that would happen Thursday) so there were only a handful of us wandering through this quaint old fishing town.
|A view from the path heading south to Pendeen|
Day 3, Pendeen to Porthcurno – Here’s where the wheels started to come off. First, my knee ligaments hadn’t miraculously healed overnight like I hoped. Second, the morning clouds gave way to rain and wind which were biggie-sized by noon. And third, we took several wrong paths along the coast, one time leaving us at a dead-end with nothing but slippery jagged rock and crashing waves beneath. Gads!
We hiked past several lonely abandoned tin mines before heading inland, getting a taxi to Land’s End solely for a very windy photo op, then another ride to the tiny village of Porthcurno. Instead of the planned 15 miles, we only squeaked out six. By the time we got settled into our cozy room at the Rockridge Inn, we were too cold and exhausted to go out for a meal. Dinner was trail mix.
(I need to say something quickly about the historical significance of Porthcurno: this is where the first transatlantic cable came ashore from the United States in 1887. The area has an amazing telecommunications history and we were able to visit the Telegraph Museum which houses an eye-popping assortment of memorabilia from the early cable days, the ships that laid cable across the ocean, and even some notes on the first telecom mergers.)
|Wild daffodils outside of Porthcurno|
Day 5, Penzance to St. Ives – Originally we had planned to hike
inland back to St Ives but once again the weather had turned nasty. We still
logged miles though by walking the coast from Penzance to the fishing town of Newlyn, then back again.
|Fishing boats in Newlyn on a wet and windy morning|
By the time we returned to Penzance we were soaking wet and ducked into the Admiral Benbow Pub to dry by the fire and knock back half a pint. The pub is nearly 400 years old, but it wasn't until 2008 that a smugglers' tunnel was discovered leading from the pub down to the beach. Oh, you pirates!
We hopped a train back to to St. Ives, walked more of the coast in the rain then settled down to a delicious dinner at the Porthminster Beach Café.
|Back in St. Ives at the end of our 47-mile hike|
Despite our scratches, blisters and bruises we continued our hike each day because we knew the aches and pains would end in 26 hours, or 17 hours, or 3 hours. We had the assurance our bodies would heal. Unfortunately this is not true for those battling cancer. Their bodies give no such assurance, nor often much hope. If you are so inclined, I hope you will consider donating to the Sarcoma Foundation of America. You’ll not only help fund research for a cure, you’ll be giving other people the blessed gift of hope. And I like hope much more than I hate cancer.
Click here to donate to Hike for a Cure to help the Sarcoma Foundation of America.
And to see a whole bunch of photos from our hike, just click yourself right on here.
It's the little things
Last year my sister Pamela made me this sweet little bracelet with one charm: hope. I wore it every step of those 47 miles in Cornwall. It was a tender reminder of why I was there.