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Glimpses of the Ocean

If you're wondering why I haven't written much about Tintagel and the rest of Cornwall, the reason is twofold:

1) I wrote a very lengthy email (epic length, in fact) about the trip to a friend that just proved that words do not do this trip justice. It's too beautiful.

2) I got distracted by a shiney-internet thingy.

Also, I keep forgetting to uphold any more photos to Flickr, and I think it needs photos.

But I so want to write about it, to talk about the trip to Tintagel itself, which was amazing. I don't think I'll ever forget the first glimpses of the ocean. I know I live right by the North Sea, and have sat and looked out on that water many a day, but this was so different. The water was so many shades of blue, and even from a distance you could pick out the shallows and the depths. I'd never experienced that before, and I'm almost afraid to go back, because it just can't be that perfect again.

The day we went out there was perfect - blue sky, warm sun. We took a smaller bus from Truro to Tintagel itself, and the windows were all wide open, keeping everything cool. I spent so much time with my face pressed against the window, looking at this vast expanse of water. If excitement and anticipation could have gotten me there faster, the bus would have started to fly.

Tintagel's castle stands on a cliff. I remember so clearly standing at the top of this cliff and looking out over the ocean, out into this distance and understanding why people though the world had an edge. It seems to just end. I don't think I've ever seen that before. When I looked over the edge, the wind pulling at my hair and making everything seem free, I could see how clear the water in the cove below the castle was. I could see the rocks, see the bottom of that water, even from where I was standing so far away. The blues and greens and aquamarines just seemed to blend in together.

At that moment I understood what makes the place magical to so many people. It's not Arthur or Guievere or Merlin. It's that the hand of man is so obvious on the cliff top, but looking down off the edge the power and beauty of nature will take your breath away. And nothing Arthur or Robert of Cornwall built survived beyond ruins, but the beauty of the landscape, of the ocean, endures.

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