A Wedding, a Floating Pub, and a Naked Yachtsman: more Adventures in Cornwall

Yesterday, we returned to Mylor. Just above the harbour is St Mylor’s Parish Church, a very beautiful and very old building, that I’ve visited every time I’ve been to Cornwall for the last twenty six years. Parts of it date back to the 11th century, and the graveyard full of ancient yew trees, trailing ivy and sloping, lichen-covered tombstones in narrow, crooked lines has always felt like a comfortingly peaceful place to me. Is that strange? To enjoy spending time in a graveyard? Perhaps so, but it has always felt like a place of rest rather than sorrow to me. There are also two other very important pieces of information I have so far kept from you. The first, is that I was actually baptised in this church. My grandmother is adamant I was baptised at night… but my parents are pretty sure this is not true.  How they can fail to agree on the details of such a momentous occasion, when the bible seems to manage just fine, I don’t know, but anyway.

The second, super exciting fact, is that Tom and I are getting married in this church next May. Think of this as a sneak preview!

Aside from booking the reception venue, designing the invitations and putting aside a ‘wedding fund’, we haven’t really done anything at all to prepare. It feels like ages away, but I’m sure the time will fly by and I’ll end up turning into a demented panic-harpy, trying to arrange everything in the last week. Any tips are very welcome. Oh, and I’ve also created a WordPress site for our wedding guests, with travel information, places to stay, advice on where to eat out, and things to see and do in the area. There’s also a page for gifts. That’s my favourite part. Has anyone else done this, or have I gone overboard (as overboard as a bride without a dress can go)?

After pottering around the church, we walked along the creek to Mylor village. It’s a lovely walk, and only takes about twenty minutes. One of many exciting events is the giant rhubarb. My father told me it would eat me if I got close enough, and I was wary of large-leafed plants for years afterwards. Seeing a trailer for the old Lost in Space film when I was about six didn’t help, as it featured a shot of giant carnivorous plants (“oh my god, Dad was right!”)

The Wild-Man of the Rhubarb

I used to spend hours imagining the sort of people that lived in the houses along Mylor Creek when I was little.They usually resembled the witches and magical creatures I read about in books, but these days I think they’re mostly Londoners escaping to the country. These steps in particular always fascinated me, especially when they were overgrown and jewelled with emerald moss in the spring. I’d loiter at the bottom, hoping someone would appear and ask me in for tea (probably lucky they didn’t, retrospectively).

We finally reached the Pandora Inn, just as the sun was beginning to chase away the storm clouds. A large thatched inn, the Pandora has burned down… a number of times now, but on this occasion it was thankfully still standing. Low wooden beams line the ceilings inside, barrels double-up as spare seating, and open fires burn in most of the rooms. Outside, a floating platform provides further seating, jutting out into the creek. Swans drift up and down, hoping for hand-outs, and children fish for crabs over the side. Locals often sail over, and moor their boats to the side of the pontoon.

The Pandora

A Sea-Swan

The view from the end of the pontoon. Not many pub-views can rival this one, though please let me know if you have any in mind!

Locals sailing over for an evening drink

My friend Kay, artist and librarian (sounds like excellent cover for ‘Secret Agent’ doesn’t it), who has been showing us all the best bits of Falmouth we didn’t know existed.


It was mostly families having dinner, and couples enjoying the sunset… and then this lot turned up to provide the entertainment. Look closely… It took him about ten minutes to, er, sort himself out, to the hilarity/ horror of the other patrons.

Kay and I seem to be tilting sideways by this point, probably due to Tom sneakily switching our half-pints of Rattler to full pints without us noticing.

We were the last group left out in the dark, but eventually the night chill got too much for us and we headed inside. Growing up on a tiny Pacific island has given me a lifelong tie to the sea, like an invisible cord that will never break, so I’m never happier than when I’m near it.  Being in Cornwall, where the sea permeates every aspect of daily life, makes me feel like I’ve come home.

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14 thoughts on “A Wedding, a Floating Pub, and a Naked Yachtsman: more Adventures in Cornwall

  1. Lovely to hear about the little church and how it is involved in your life.

    My life has been entwined with a lovely little church in Bearsden, north of Glasgow. I accidentally met my wife-to-be outside it 50 years ago, her father was the Rector there, we were married there, I ended-up playing the organ there, our children were christened there, our in-laws buried from there……so I can understand your feelings. 

    I think we all look forward to hearing about your wedding and seeing the photos at the little wedding.

    Sent from Samsung tabletCocktails and Country Tales wrote:

    • I’ve always found it fascinating how important buildings we don’t live in can become to us. The church in Bearsden must mean a lot to you, and trigger so many memories when you visit it. Jx

  2. I have visited the Pandora myself when I lived in Cornwall – it really is a beautiful setting, and boy can they drink!!! ha ha – lovely photos – maybe you could include some giant rhubarb in your bridal bouquet !!!!!

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