Sympathy for the Devil

The weather forecast was not exactly inspiring for today. There was a distinct bite to the still fast-flowing air, too, adding an unwelcome wind-chill effect. Mid morning was looking reasonably bright, though so we decided to treat ourselves to a car ride back west to Godrevy Point where, we were told, there is a sizeable seal colony.

The victorious vicar leaves Hell's Mouth Dawdling along the coast road instead of screaming down the main road, we were soon approaching an interesting sounding coastal feature called Hell’s Mouth. (Last week, on the way from the Lizard to Cadgwith, we’d passed the Devil’s Frying Pan. The Evil One seems to have quite a coastal presence.) Happily, there was also a lay-by to pull into so we could engage in some traditional tourist sight-seeing. We joined a few other fellow tourists and stared, as one must, straight into Hell’s Mouth, a decidedly precipitous formation cut into the coastal cliffs. I waited in vain for the Devil and his cohorts to put on something of a blood-curdling display of strength. Nothing; all was peaceful. Then, as if by way of an explanation, I noticed to my right a vicar, resplendent in dog-collar, also staring straight into Hell’s Mouth. What an utterly delightful juxtaposition. Today we could rest easy because the forces of good were clearly stronger and had vanquished the forces of evil.

Seal beachingSeals basking on a protected (from Joe Public) beachEnough of the forces of good and evil; we were on our way to the National Trust area at Godrevy Point to see an example of the forces of nature. We had a short walk, only about a mile, past Godrevy Island with its lighthouse, in search of the seals. We peered over one cliff and saw two seals in the water but could see none basking on any rocks. This couldn’t be the source of excitement. A little further, however, we discovered the main attraction: a sheltered beach surrounded by cliffs, inaccessible to the public, upon which I counted about 130 basking seals. It was quite a thrill to see such a colony in the wild for the first time. Some were tussling in the surf, perhaps the traditional male dominance disputes. Occasionally one or two would go into the sea to show off their elegant swimming techniques before lumbering back up the beach. We could have watched for ages.

The weather had different ideas, though, as a “passing shower” (which looked more as if it might turn into a passing downpour) appeared to be approaching. Out with the waterproofs for the first time on this trip as we made our way back to the car to find somewhere for lunch (cold paella with the chewy wabbit sifted out!).

After the disappointment of a security-enabled wi-fi at Truro McDonalds, it was Hayle McDonalds to the rescue with an open wi-fi network. We were happy to sit with a cup of tea and catch up on posts and emails prior to doing battle with Redruth Tesco.

Posted in Cornwall, 2008
3 comments on “Sympathy for the Devil
  1. Your basking seals link points to the seal beaching picture.

  2. Rosemary says:

    Not for publication. Love that vicar; surely not many can say they’ve survived such a feat, or maybe that’s what they do every day? And good for you to disguise his face; v thoughtful. When I click on the basking seals I get the single seal, which I also get when I click on him. Love the “wabbit” refs everywhere!

  3. JC says:

    I don’t understand the funky seal link confusion. Too complex to fix with the kit that I have here – I did try but I don’t have enough upload control on the laptop (don’t ask – something about no iframe support).

1 Pings/Trackbacks for "Sympathy for the Devil"
  1. […] two photographs of genuine in-the-wild seals during our recent trip to Cornwall (”Sympathy for the Devil” post), thanks to the wonders of desktop technology at home, I have fixed the links and both […]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*