Walk completed August 28, 2011

Friday, June 10, 2011

Day 10 -- Port Isaac to Boscastle

Rain before seven, clear by eleven.” Hah. It rained hard all morning, accompanied by a cold wind. No, a cold gale. Surprisingly, I came across at least a dozen couples out for the day. They were all staying locally, so they weren’t required to be out in the bad weather. They were just typical English walkers, who didn’t care about the weather.

I left Port Isaac at 9:30 and arrived in Boscastle at 6:45. I wasn’t dawdling, and my feet were not slowing me down. And I probably didn’t spend more than an hour talking to people on the trail. OK, maybe 90 minutes. It was a very difficult day, and I don’t see how Andy Robinson could have thought the walk to Boscastle could be done from Wadebridge in one day. Had I tried to do that, mountain rescue would be out looking for me tonight.

Just outside of Tintagel, I came upon a well-dressed gentleman sitting on a bench staring forlornly out to sea. I asked him if everything was alright. He said, “No. Tintagel is famous for the Tintagel Castle, and all of the lore about King Arthur and the Knights of the Round Table.”

Pub named after Art
I told him that I had passed Merlin’s gift shop in town, and that it seemed that every store was selling replicas of Excalibur.

“That’s the problem," he replied.  "The whole economy of the village is built around tourists searching for King Arthur. And without the castle tours, I couldn’t afford to keep the castle.”

“You own the castle?” I inquired.

“Yes. I’m King Arthur, and if the tourists ever find me they’ll stop coming to Tintagel, and the village will go bankrupt and I’ll lose my castle. So every morning I’ve got to leave the castle and come out to this place on the trail where tourists never come. You aren’t a tourist are you? You shan’t – how do you say – blow my cover?”

“Oh, of course not. I’m a highly-trained lawyer, and preserving confidences is my stock in trade. Ask my friend Professor Ron.”

“All I ask for,” replied the King, “is to be able to walk around town without the tourists identifying me.”

“Not a problem, Art. Here carry my backpack. If you carry a backpack the tourists will not even see you. Even if you greet them with a hardy “Good afternoon,” they will avert their eyes and pretend you aren’t even there.”

"Should I remove my crown?”

“That won’t be necessary. If you carry a backpack you are reduced to the level of homeless, and even if you are wearing an $85 hiking shirt and $100 hiking pants and carrying state-of-the-art carbon fiber hiking poles that cost more than any tourist could afford, they will still treat you like you were homeless.”

“Homeless??? I own the castle!!!”

“It doesn’t matter if you own three castles. Carry a backpack and the tourists won’t even see you. If you want to remain anonymous, you would do better carrying a backpack around town than trying to find solitude on the trail.”

“That’s wonderful news. For your service to the crown, I will confer knighthood upon you.” And after contemplating the array of maps in my pocket and the GPS hanging from my backpack, he drew his sword and gently tapped me on the shoulder. “I dub thee Sir Lost-a-lot.”

Unusual Stile
 And that’s the truth. Honest.

© 2011 Ken Klug


  1. Sir Lost-a-lot.....right up there with the cooking class and the lost British tourist.
    Really, you are good!
    Hang in there, your...Highness!

  2. Love it Ken, I think you paid it too much for you pants though, god knows how much your trousers cost.


  3. Hello Ken

    Hope you are not listening to too many weather reports for the next few days! Keep positive and think of the dinner and pint we are going to buy you next week!

    Pauline, Roger and Nora Too! x

  4. Hope you don't get to wet today...........