Here in the Scillies the holiday really begins. These islands are fantastically beautiful. At least five of them are inhabited; St Mary’s being the largest and most populated. Each island has a particular character, although they are all composed of ancient granite that glistens in the sun.
St Mary’s has a network of minor roads, lanes and pathways that crisscross the undulating terrain. The main town, really a village, is Hugh Town, with a few shops, a Post Office and a Lloyds Bank. It boasts a major harbour where the ‘Scillonian’ docks daily. She is crucial for provisioning the islands, being the main means of importing goods and ferrying people and vehicles, not that there are many of the latter. Small motorboats are used to take people to and from the other islands. In the south east corner of St Mary’s there’s a small airport for light aircraft.
This evening I enjoyed a walk to Peninnis Head, where there is a lighthouse, but for me the major attraction is the wonderful natural sculpture, far grander than any manmade creations. Henry Moore and Barbara Hepworth no doubt were inspired by the rounded and worn forms of granite outcrops found around such islands as these. Wind, rain and sun have worked on the granite over centuries moulding massive forms, some resembling parts of the human anatomy and one shaped like a primitive giant’s head.
As I marvelled at the jagged rocky islets in the direction of Bishop Rock lighthouse the sea sparkled brightly while reflecting the sun a million fold, nearly blinding me in a fraction of a second. The sun is but a minor star; it is so powerful no human or animal can bear to look at it; how can man possibly look at the Creator of the stars who calls Himself the Light of the World? Don’t tell me there is no God, and that the universe is an accident or a big bang! Nothing could be more ridiculous.
One of my oars for the Seahopper dinghy snapped this morning as I was rowing ashore to buy some groceries. Mending it is out of the question, because it is in such a bad shape - I’ll have to buy a new set.
Maybe tomorrow I’ll take the boat to Porth Cressa, if the wind has any northing. This inlet is to the south of Hugh Town where boats can anchor free of charge, but care has to be taken to avoid electric and telephone cables on the seabed. I’ve found a launderette not far from the beach, so I’ll be able to catch up on washing my dirty shirts, pants and socks.