After the longest London-bound fight I think I have ever experienced (14 and a half hours) followed by a five hour car journey, I have woken up to a beautifully crisp, cold and clear winter’s day in Cornwall.
North Cornwall to be precise; we are staying in the old market town of Launceston (pronounced Laaanson if you are Cornish, Lornson if you are not) on the Devon and Cornwall border, sandwiched between the two moors of Bodmin and Dartmoor.
Despite the blue sky, despite the good dose of Scottish blood running through my veins and despite the fact that I was born in the UK, the temperature – to my Singapore-attuned body anyway – feels glacial and my Uniqlo thermals are coming in to their own.
The town has grown up around the Castle, built after the Norman Conquest and it dominates the skyline. There is a charming market square, houses are Georgian and produce is local. It’s actually rather like stepping back in time (if you said the word ‘mall,’ for instance, to someone Cornish, they would assume you meant ‘maul’ as in mauled by a dog/the beast of Bodmin moor…that, in fact, would be a more likely context for the word, just to provide you with a bit of background on how rural it really is here!).
Local produce wherever you are, be it Singapore, Scotland or Spain, is always a treat to see and even more of a treat to eat. Our haul today included beautifully fresh veg from farms that fall within a 10 miles radius of the town…
…and meat from one of the local butcher’s who also doubles up as a farm shop.
That’s all well and good but I do have to admit that I did also pop in to the monolithic Tescos that Launceston has too. Apart from their brilliantly priced books/ingredients/beauty stuff/everything, not forgetting their children’s clothes that my two are now shamelessly sporting head to toe, I would like to lay claim to the other reason I was so keen to visit Tescos: it really does have the best view in town.
Main image of Launceston Castle courtesy of Cornwalls