I’ve always wanted to go to Cornwall, and during my battle with cancer last year I vowed that this year we would go there for a holiday. At last we set off on Friday the 25th May for a week in a holiday home at Riviere Sands near Hayle, travelling via my favourite mode of transport the train. After catching a train from our local station to Leeds we arrived early, in fact we could have caught the earlier train to Plymouth at 09.10am and as it turned out we might have been better to have done just that.
Wiling the time away whilst we waited for our train, we had a drink from the Pumpkin cafe on the station platform, Kerri having her usual hot chocolate whilst I had a decaf cappuccino. After what seemed like an age, our train finally pulled into platform 12 and we settled down into our seats for the long journey to Plymouth. Despite the fact that it was quite warm outside, we were nice and cool thanks to the air conditioning in the coach. I’d also been helped to get my suitcase onto the train and in the luggage rack by a nice young man and in fact our journey down to Cornwall has helped restore my faith in human kindness, as we received help every time we had to get the suitcase off or on the train. Either that, or I looked so feeble and old that they took pity on me!
As we neared Plymouth, we were held up by approximately half an hour due to signalling problems and we missed our connection with the Great Western train to Hayle. They did contact the station at Plymouth and ask if the train could be held up until ours arrived, but they wouldn’t wait, so once we all embarked at Plymouth with now another hour nearly to wait, we were all compensated with a ticket for free drinks for our trouble, and handed a compensation claim to make to Cross Country trains. However, this was actually not fair in my view, as it wasn’t the fault of Cross Country trains, it was a Network Rail problem.
At least we had plenty of time for a toilet break whilst we waited. Trouble was, we were not going to be arriving at Hayle station until roughly 20.00pm or thereabouts. I just hoped that someone would be available to give us our van keys at the holiday camp once we finally arrived. Just in case, I rang the office ( I had the booking papers with me which contained their phone number) and warned them that it would probably be after 20.00pm before we arrived, and I was assured that someone would be manning the desk to give out the keys.
At last the Great Western train arrived and we all piled on with our luggage. Again I received help with our suitcase and we settled down for the remainder of our journey. The coach that we had chosen happened to not have its air conditioner working, so again all passengers in the coach were given free drinks. Hmm. Good job we have had a toilet break I thought as we journeyed along. Eventually we arrived at Hayle station. It was a steep walk down to the town itself from the station, and from there I rang for a taxi after getting the number from a passer-by. It was about a 10 to 15 minute drive from the station to the holiday park. Sure enough a member of staff was manning the office and handed us our keys after marking down on the map of the park where our particular van was.
By now, both of us were just about managing to keep upright. I was tired and so was Kerri, but we mustered forth all of our remaining resources and found our new home for the week. First job, cup of refreshing tea! It was just a good job that I had had the foresight to bring some teabags with me and the man in the office kindly lent us some milk, as the park Spar shop was closed. After that we emptied the suitcase and put everything in its allotted place. Whoever had cleaned the van had forgotten the sheets and pillowcases for Kerri’s single bed, so I had to return to the office to get some for her before we could make her bed up. Hmm.
Before you could say ‘Jack Robinson’ we were both attired in our jimjams and ready for bed! What a day! I do know this, there is no way would I ever contemplate driving all the way to Cornwall from Leeds even if I could drive, and it makes you realise just how big our country is. It was bed at 10.00 and as soon as my head hit the pillow I was fast asleep. We would have to go exploring the park and our surroundings tomorrow.