Contemplation…Off and about today…The last of the Port Isaac photos…

A gorgeous countryside view as we drove toward Port Isaac from St. Teath (pronounced, “breath”).

Fascinating Fact of the Day About Port Isaac:
“Port Isaac’s pier was constructed during the reign of Henry VIII. A 1937 history said, “…Tudor pier and breakwater have now yielded to a strong new sea-wall balanced by an arm on the opposite side of the cove, and we do not doubt that the fishermen sleep more soundly in their beds on stormy nights.” The village centre dates from the 18th and 19th centuries, from a time when its prosperity was tied to local coastal freight and fishing. The port handled cargoes of coal, wood, stone, ores, limestone, salt, pottery and heavy goods which were conveyed along its narrow streets. Small coastal sailing vessels were built below Roscarrock Hill.”

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Often times, we strive to share the details of our daily lives, however simple and uneventful or, exciting and heart-pounding.  In either case, we share our dreams and hopes for future travel.

Over the past several months with so much up in the air, the future unknown, our dreams were on hold while we tentatively booked only a few plans for the future.  We’d lost so much when we had to cancel many plans losing tens of thousands of dollars in deposits we’d paid and flights we’d booked, most of which was non-refundable.

The tour I longed for the most, the comprehensive safari in Kenya for exquisite luxury tented camps and hotels including Little Governor’s Camp, Giraffe Manor, and the Maasai Mara, (where we’d been on safari in 2013) had to be canceled.  We were scheduled to leave South Africa on February 15th (when our visas ended), three days after I had the bypass surgery.  We weren’t able to leave until three months later when I was cleared to fly.
Port Isaac ocean views are stunning.
And then, three months later while attempting to leave the country, accompanied by copies of medical documents and doctor’s letters, we were determined to have immigration accept our reasons for the “overstay.”

Alas, they did not do so and we were labeled in their system as “undesirables” and told we couldn’t return to the country for five years.  However, we had the right to request a waiver based on the circumstances, by filing copious documents with their “overstay” department at immigration.  

We filed the documents well within the required seven day period and have inquired numerous times to no avail.  It appears our only recourse is to hire a South African immigration lawyer which we are considering.
The Cornwall area is known for its craggy cliffs.
We’d be less concerned about getting back into South Africa sooner than the five-year ban, but we have a cruise booked from Lisbon, Portugal to Capetown, South Africa embarking on November 10, 2020, a cruise we’ve been excited to experience and for which we could lose the deposit.

This particular cruise with Azamara cruise line has an itinerary we’ll most likely never be able to experience in the future, an itinerary that may eventually be discontinued.  

It sails along the western coast of Africa with ports of call to include: Casablanca, Morocco; Agadir, Morocco; Canary Islands; Banjul, Gambia;
Abidjan, Ivory Coast; Takoradi, Ghana; Luanda, Angola; Walvis Bay, Namibia; Luderitz, Namibia, and then to Capetown where we plan to stay for three days.
Access to the ocean for swimming and launching small boats.
Of the total 18 months, we’ve spent in South Africa, we’d never visited Capetown when we didn’t want to leave Marloth Park any more than we’d have to for an “immigration stamp” allowing us to stay 90 more days.  

Twice during this last 15-month stay in Marloth Park, we flew to Zambia and then visited Botswana and, Zimbabwe returning to the airport known as Nelspruit/Mpumalanga/Kruger, to have our visas stamped once again. 
The second time we made this trip we were told we wouldn’t be allowed another extension unless we applied with Home Affairs immigration department.  We did and were granted an extension until the above mentioned February 15, 2019,  three days after I had the dreadful surgery resulting in numerous complications. 
A typical narrow road in Port Isaac.
However, our comprehensive May 2019 request for a waiver for the five-year ban and our status as “undesirables” has been ignored.  We’ve decided if we don’t receive a result by this November, we’ll contact an immigration attorney in South Africa.

Ah, those who think that a life of world travel is easy is kidding themselves.  Sure, a one or two year adventure may be relatively uneventful, other than the joys of the travel experiences.  

But, now, almost seven years later, we accept the harsh reality that life is complicated and may deviate from the desired path over which we choose, regardless of all of our best intentions.
A typical narrow road in Port Isaac.
Oddly, even to us, we still feel passionate and hopeful for the future of our ongoing world travels.  We also realize that at some point in the future we will have to stop traveling, health and age being the relevant factors.

In the interim, we may have had to refocus our activities to accommodate my “new normal” but our hearts and spirits stay strong and motivated to continue on.

Please continue on with us…
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Photo from one year ago today, September 13, 2018:
This could be two females with this male lion or a female and a young male who’s mane has yet to develop. There’s a male behind the male in front.  For more photos, please click here.

More on Port Isaac…Known as Portwenn in the Doc Martin TV series…Healing…

St. Peter church in Port Isaac.  (Too bad the power lines obstruct the view.  I tried removing them but doing so hindered the photo).

Fascinating Fact of the Day About Port Isaac:
“The small vibrant fishing village of Port Isaac is one of Cornwall’s most well-known and popular holiday destinations. The picturesque fishing village lies on a stunning stretch of coastline, midway between Polzeath (and the Rumps headland to the west) and the ever-popular village of Tintagel Much of the coastline and surrounding countryside of Port Isaac is designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and Heritage Coastline. Port Isaac, was a busy coastal port from the Middle Ages to the mid 19th. Century when it was an active harbour where cargoes like stone, coal, timber, and pottery were loaded and unloaded.”

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Again, it’s raining which is expected to continue throughout the day and perhaps again tomorrow.  As much as we’d like to get out sightseeing, it’s relatively fruitless on these rainy days and on these narrow winding roads.  


It’s impossible to stop on the side of the road for photos when there aren’t any shoulders on the roads or in the small towns we encounter along the way.  Neither of us can conceive of hiding under raincoats with the camera in a plastic bag to get what might be a poor photo anyway.  We wait patiently for sunny days.
Expansive views of the English countryside near Port Isaac.
In the interim, we continue to busy ourselves on the farm, taking care of household tasks, laundry, cooking, and continuing research for the future.  In a mere 42 days, we’ll be boarding a cruise in Southampton, England with an itinerary that takes us to a few new (to us) ports of call.  We always enjoy a transatlantic cruise.

Each day, I continue to improve in baby steps after stopping those three awful drugs.  It’s only been 17 days since I stopped the drug, Bisoprolol, that caused me the most side effects including horrible pain in my arms and legs as well as intermittent breathing issues which may continue for months after stopping two of the three drugs.  
Blue sky, blue sea, and craggy cliffs.
Yesterday, was the first day I had no breathing issues whatsoever.  But this morning I noticed it had returned.  There’s not much I can do to stop it.  Any type of activity doesn’t seem to make it worse, such as walking and stairs.  
As a result, the breathing issue is not exercise-induced which gives me peace of mind that its not a heart-related issue.  In reading the literature that accompanied these drugs, breathing problems are common for a period of time (as much as one year) following the weaning off Amiodarone and Bisoprolol.    
Port Isaac welcomes visitors.  But, we doubt the local residents are happy about the influx of tourists since Doc Martin began in 2004, other than those benefiting from tourist purchases.
If I had any other symptoms, I’d go to a doctor but otherwise, I feel quite good, seven months today since the surgery.  Once we get to the US and are in Arizona, most likely I go to the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale to be checked.
A typical road in Port Isaac which we could access by car.
Today, I’m busy chopping and dicing to make low carb taco salad.  We have delicious leftover pot roast which I’ll shred with seasonings for Tom’s salad and I’ve made a tuna salad which I’ll stuff into both halves of a small avocado for my dinner, with a side salad including onions, celery, grape tomatoes, sliced green olives, and lettuce.

Tomorrow, we have an exciting afternoon activity planned (exciting to us, anyway) which we’ll share after the experience with photos.
The Old School Hotel and Restaurant in Port Isaac, located in the center of town.

Have a lovely evening wherever you may be!  We thank each and every one of you for following our world travel story, almost seven years in the making.

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Photo from one year ago today, September 12, 2018:
Lounging poolside.  For more photos, please click here.

Port Isaac, known as Portwenn, location for filming “Doc Martin” TV series…What a site to see!

As we approached Port Isaac, the filming site for TV series, Doc Martin, the scenery took our breath away.

Fascinating Fact of the Day About Port Isaac, Cornwall*:

From this site: “Port Isaac is a small fishing village on the Atlantic coast of north Cornwall, England, United Kingdom. The nearest towns are Wadebridge and Camelford, both ten miles away. Port Gaverne, commonly mistaken to be part of Port Isaac, is a nearby hamlet that has its own history.”
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We began watching the first 62 episodes of the popular British TV Series, Doc Martin over eight seasons which ended.  Based on popular demand, the series was renewed for season 9 which begins on TV here in the UK on September 25th.

We’ll be able to watch the first four episodes while we’re here in England on the TV and will stream the remaining four episodes after we get settled into our next location.
Although beaches and ocean access is abundant in Cornwall, the constant cool weather may prevent locals and tourists from spending time at the beaches.
Doc Martin, in an odd way, reminds me of the US TV series Seinfeld, in that it was referred to as the “show about nothing.” Doc Martin has this same characteristic.  

It’s somewhat of a mindless show requiring little contemplation but the subtlety so prevalent with the British, along with their typical sense of humor, often “tongue in cheek” makes this show a gem.

We fell in love with all the quirky characters including Doc Martin, who is masterfully played by well-known British actor Martin Clunes who has had quite an illustrious career.  For more on this series, please click here.
Not only are the ocean views outstanding, but the rolling patchwork countryside also has much to offer.
The series is masterfully described as follows:
“Is there a dyspeptic doctor in the house? Successful surgeon Dr. Martin Ellingham abruptly leaves his London practice to become general practitioner in the sleepy fishing village of Portwenn, where he spent the holidays during his youth. But his luxury car and lavish wardrobe immediately rub the locals the wrong way, and once they get a load of his abrasive attitude and lack of bedside manner, he quickly alienates most of the townsfolk.”

It was during our world travels in 2012 that we found we could relax and get out of our heads if we watched a few favorite shows when we didn’t have evening plans either on my laptop or on a flat-screen TV (if available) using our HDMI cord.

With the inability to access some US TV series for streaming, we found we could more readily download many popular British shows.  One of the British shows that set us on this path (along with “Downton Abbey”) was “Luther,” a gripping police drama starring Idris Alba, a fantastic actor.  From there, we were hooked.
There are numerous shops, restaurants, and tourist-related businesses lining the streets of Port Isaac.
At least half of the shows we watched over the past seven years have been British-made with many of our friends from the UK recommending a variety of shows which we ultimately enjoyed.

One of the reasons we chose to stay in St. Teath, Cornwall was due to its close proximity to the location where Doc Martin has been filmed.  With the massive number of tourists we knew would be in Port Isaac, we weren’t interested in staying in a holiday home in the sleepy town.

Yesterday, we witnessed an unbelievable tourist infusion which must be difficult for the local residents until it slows down during the colder winter months.  We ran into a few difficulties once we arrived after a 25-minute drive from our holiday home.
A pair of seagulls resting atop a parked car.
One was the fact there were virtually no available parking spaces.  If we waited at the few parking lots close to the town, we may have been able to eventually get a spot.  

But the bigger issue was “me.”  Should we have been able to find a parking place in one of the lots (nothing available in the center of town), I would not have been able to make the long walk up and down the steep hills required to get into the town.

After all, its only been a few weeks since I could walk without excruciating pain.  It will take time for me to build the strength and muscle tone in order to be able to tackle such a trek.  
From this site:  Looking at Port Isaac first, it is a true commercial fishing harbour from yesteryear, when it was the centre of attention for the Pilchard industry. In the heyday of Blue shark fishing from the south coast, it was nothing for sharking enthusiasts to drive to the north coast just to get some tubs of Pilchard for use as rubby dubby, as the oil exuded by this small fish is second to none when attracting predators. The pier at the end was built during the reign of Henry the Eighth ,and while the town dates back 700 years, it was during the 18th and 19th centuries that the town’s prosperity was assured with the handling of ocean-bound cargo like salt, coal, wood and of course all manner of sea fish, crabs and lobsters. Back in 1869, the Port Isaac lifeboat was established with a lifeboat called “Sarah and Richard” that had to be dragged through the narrow streets for launching. In the 1960s the RNLI put in the inshore lifeboat, and since 1967 it has the new”D” inshore model. Today, the picturesque narrow streets and alleys are home to cake shops, souvenirs, and eateries, with general tourism, boosted to celebrity status with programs such as “Poldark”,” Saving Grace” and “Doc Martin”. Out in Port Isaac Bay there are reputed to have been over 1000 wrecks, a testament to the winter, and sometimes summer storms, that rumble in off the Atlantic. Many of these would have been sailing ships at the mercy of the wind, whereas today, the age of motor power sees far fewer mishaps.
I am working on it daily with all the hills we encounter when we’re out and the walking around the house and ground along with the 15 to 20 flights of steps I do intentionally each day going up and downstairs for added exercise.  

When we couldn’t find a parking spot and realized that most of the buildings shown in Doc Martin series were only accessible on foot, we resigned ourselves to the reality that the only photos we’d be able to take were those we could manage from the car.

On a few occasions, Tom was able to find a place to pull over for a minute or two while I got out of the car to take photos of the ocean and massive cliffs in the area.
This is one of our favorite ocean views in Port Isaac.
After driving around for an hour or more, we finally headed out of Port Isaac on the road to explore the countryside a little further. It was a pleasant drive.
Although we were disappointed not to have been able to capture some of the photos we’d intended, we had a good time exploring, as usual especially on a sunny day.  More Port Isaac photos will follow in the next few days.

Today, its raining again and we’ll stay put while conducting research for future travels.  Right now, we feel we’d like to wait until we get to the US in 58 days, where we’ll be staying for two months until we head to India.

Our heartfelt prayers and memories for those in the US who lost loved ones during the 9/11 attack, 18 years ago as of today.
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Photo from one year ago today, September 11, 2018:
Many species can share a space in harmony.  For more photos, please click here.