Postcard One - West Cornwall
The LEJOG challenge sends you postcards at various points en route and I decided I was going to either write a short story or explore my main character - Faith - for each location. Faith gets her first outing here as we set out on this journey together and get to know each other a bit better.
Cornwall. Logres. A land steeped in mystery and myth. Home of King Arthur. The start of my journey to find myself, so it seems fitting to start with a story from my childhood. I first came to Cornwall with my Mum and Dad when I was about eight. We didn’t have too many holidays in those days. Couldn’t afford it, I suppose. Anyway, we’d rented a caravan for a week during the summer holidays and mostly spent our time playing games and laughing. So much laughter.
One day they decided to surprise me with a trip to Tintagel. Dad had been telling me stories about King Arthur and his legendary knights all week and I was fascinated, dragging my parents into the world of my imagination. Dad was King Arthur, Mum the evil Morgan le Fey and I of course, was Guinevere, beautiful and regal, tossing mu hair disdainfully at the dolls who served as my loyal ladies-in-waiting.
I cried when we got to the castle. The soaring turrets topped by the royal standard of my imagination were replaced by the reality of crumbling masonry and toppled towers, the large stones laying where they had fallen like drunken revellers at the end of a party that’s gone on for too long. My King Arthur was nowhere to be seen and the disintegration of my dreams was too much for me to take. I dissolved into tears and in response to the anxious inquiries of my parents, was only able to stutter out a barely intelligible response. My Dad however, needed no explanation. Instinctively he seemed to understand the source of my distress and scooped me up, cuddling me into the comforting curve of his neck.
He was like that, my Dad. He knew that you didn’t always need words to make things better. Sometimes it was enough just to be there.