Saturday, April 27, 2019

Exploring England, Part 2

Barrows and Tors.  What are they? Why would we spend most of a day in Cornwall searching for these isolated places?

A barrow or carn is an ancient burial site.  (If you hang around the Willow family, you will discover that conversations about such places is commonplace, even at the dinner table.)
Ballowall Barrow, or Carn Gluze, is a burial mound with chambers where more than one person would have been buried.

The walk up to the top of the cliff was worth it for what we found.
We were warned to stay on the paths and not wander around because there are mines and holes left over from the tin mining that was done.

The view over the Atlantic Ocean was amazing.

 But we didn't really come just for the view.  We wanted to see this hidden treasure.

For a long time, this barrow was covered over with debris from nearby tin mines. Eventually, it was discovered and excavated by William Copeland Borlase in 1878.  According to the sign at the site, "His excavations revealed a unique and complex Bronze Age funerary monument."  

"Ballowall Barrow is one of the largest and most complex of the prehistoric funerary monuments that cluster along the West Penwith coastline.  Often located in dramatic locations, it is likely that the local communities which built them did so to provide striking tombs for the dead."

Older Daughter loves to explore these places.

Another site in the area is Carn Euny, an Iron Age village. According to archaeologists who have done excavations there, it was occupied from at least 500 BC through late Roman times.

 "At the heart of the village is its most intriguing feature -- a stone-walled underground passage know as a fogou.  This mysterious type of Iron Age monument is found only in the far west of Cornwall." (English Heritage site statement)

As we were walking up the path to the village, we met a couple who had been there before and they told us about the fogou and its importance.  Otherwise, I might not have been as impressed with walking through the tunnel.

Carn Euny Holy Well was on the edge of the path and we almost missed it!  

As you can tell, we are a family who love ancient history!

Friday, April 26, 2019

Friday Fave Fives, end of April

Friday Fave Fives!  I'm living in the recent past processing all those photos from our trip to England, but I'm also living in the present--reviewing this week and finding the blessings.  Here are my Five Faves from this last full week of April.  If you want, you can join me and others by clicking THIS LINK to our host Susanne's blog.

1.  The Professor did his magic and I have photos!  So far, I've published ONE POST with pictures from our trip to England.  I'm loving reliving our days there through processing the photos.

2.  Trip to Phoenix.  I don't necessarily love the hours we spend on the road.  But I do love the beauty of the desert and of course the destination which is PAL's house!  We took a hike on Friday and she was our 'guide'.

3.  Easter with our PAL!  I love celebrating the resurrection of Jesus Christ and I love celebrating with my son, daughter-in-law and granddaughter.  We attended their church for both Good Friday and Resurrection Sunday services.

4.  This week we received a couple of emails from former coworkers in Indonesia, telling us about a person who is writing a booklet about the history of our international mission in Papua.  She asked for our biography and some photos of us and our ministry there.  So I dug out my albums and found this picture of our family from 1988.

This also reminded me that I really need to get back to focusing on organizing and scanning all those hundreds of photos we still have sitting around.

5.  Our weather has been perfect for getting out into the garden and weeding, and there are lots of weeds to keep me busy.  I love to be outside and just gaze at the flowers while I'm cleaning up the weeds.
Lavender and Poppies on the bank

I hope you have had a blessed week!

Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Exploring England, Part 1

Are you ready for this?  Lots and lots of photos of England!  Be ready to be amazed and fall in love!

The Professor and I planned this spring trip to England so we could travel with World's Best Neighbor and with The New Boy and his mama.  We all met up at Heathrow airport and hopped the express train into London.  World's Best Neighbor waved bye to us and joined her husband's cousin for a visit.  Then we climbed aboard our Night Riviera train to Penzance.

May I say that I fell in love with Cornwall!  There is a caveat to that statement, though.  We found the roads in Cornwall to be...challenging. Narrow. Windy. Sometimes scary. Like when you meet another car on the one lane road with stone walls on either side.  The Professor navigated them with amazing ability.  I'm glad it wasn't me driving.

Lanes and roads notwithstanding, we all four loved Cornwall!  What do you know about Cornwall?  It is famous for tin mining and the birthplace of industrialization, for pirates (think Pirates of Penzance), for Cornish pasties, for remote moors and beaches, for ancient barrows, for legends about King Arthur.

We gave ourselves only two days in Cornwall so we had to choose carefully where we would go.

Cape Cornwall is almost the farthest west spot in England.  Land's End beats it by four miles.  But oh! The views!  I could live here!
Looking over the cape toward the Atlantic Ocean

That smoke stack tower?  You can hike right up to it.

Yeah. I could live here.

Walled gardens overlooking the beach and sea. 

Even a greenhouse!

While The Professor and I hiked to the tower, The New Boy and Older Daughter scrambled down to the beach and wandered around.

The view across to the other side of the cove!

There was once a church in this field.

This is just the beginning!  So. Much. More. To. See.  Come back for a continuing tour of Ballowall Barrow, Ancient Tors,Tintagel...

Friday, April 19, 2019

Back on Track

It's Good Friday!  I'm finally back online to share my Friday Fave Fives with you all.  Did you miss me?  Did you even notice I was absent?  I hope so!  Here are my Five Faves from the last four weeks!  (Was it really that long?)

1.  If you read my previous post, you will know that we spent three weeks in England. Yes, England!  Because our daughter wanted to take The New Boy on his first international trip during spring break, we tagged along to share the experience with them, and then we stayed for another twelve days to visit more new places.  I am thankful to this wonderful opportunity!

2.  I'm thankful for safe travels to and from England and all around the country.  We rented a car for the first week, we rode trains, and we hopped on and off the tube in London.  That was a lot of traveling, and I never take safe travels for granted.

3.  I'm thankful for good friends.  Because of a theft of cards, etc, we had to close our accounts, and people helped us by paying for accommodations and sending cash.  I am so very thankful for good, good friends!

4.  As usual, our friend picked us up at LAX, even in the midst of a huge airport traffic jam, at 11pm!  That's a true friend!  Then she drove us to her house where our car was parked and we hopped on a mostly 70 mph freeway and made it home safely at 1 am.  I'm thankful for yet more wonderful friends and a successful last leg of our trip.

5.  Have you noticed that there aren't any photos here yet of our trip?  Yeah, well.  I bought a new camera just a day before we left, and I pushed the wrong button (I 'knew' what I was doing, but not the result), so four days of my photos have not been easily accessible to edit and put my copyright mark on them.  What I'm thankful for is that The Professor is working on a solution.  The photos should be available 'soon'.

Happy Easter to all my friends who celebrate Easter!

Tuesday, April 16, 2019


Oh, hey! Hi! Yes, I'm back! So, where was Willow for the past almost month?  Here are some hints.

Obviously, it was a long trip.  The New Boy was tired.

He revived.  There were special places he wanted to see that first day.

YES!  We were in LONDON!

Can I say that it is really fun traveling with an eleven year old boy?  His view of what's interesting was different from his mom's and ours, but he (mostly) happily went along with our sightseeing plans.  As long as it involved food.

I am still recovering from jet lag and still organizing photos.  Come back soon to 'see' the whole trip!