b l u s t e r

990219.1317 kavorna bakery , st mary’s

lunch was a vegetable pasty and a cup of coffee . white enamel chairs , blue gingham cloths on circular tables , flouresecnt lights , radio one . i’m the only person here , even the staff are in a back room somehwere , from which laughter occasionally springs .

it’s a wet windy day . there’s no boat service from st agnes today , but i hitched a lift with the mail . there was some doubt whether it would be possible to come alongside the quay , as the tide was low and there’s a fair swell running . i had the usual last-minute flurry of throwing things in my bag and striding down to the quay . halfway down i saw the mail boat rounding the end of st marys , pitching around in the waves . there was no difficulty at the jetty . i took some photos of the mail being handed across , and of samson and bryher shadowy in the mist . then it was time to fling my bags in and leap down into the swordfish .

as a rule , people who don’t suffer sea-sickness usually seem to enjoy rougher conditions . my father and grandfather always recounted stories of small craft and heavy seas with relish . compared to what the atlantic is capable of , today’s conditions are pretty trivial , but i did have to brace myself against a bulkhead whilst taking pictures . i was glad to be on the water . johann suggested we should go out for a sail at an opportune moment . i couldn’t restrain a spaniel-like grin . at least i assume that’s what it looked like .

i arrived here on st mary’s and walked around the near-deserted streets of hughtown . a lone windsurfer was flashing assuredly back and forth across the harbour . while i was standing on porthmellon beach , looking out at the squalls passing over the islands , he came in and we spoke for a while ( his name’s tristan and he works in the boat yard ) . then i came here for some food .

later this afternoon i’ve got a meeting with the environmental trust , the body set up by the duchy to take on responsibility for the custodial aspect its role . i’m interested to hear their thoughts on information technology in the local economy .

my lesson yesterday evening went fine , i think . thirteen people turned up , that’s about twenty per cent of the island’s population ! i was absurdly nervous beforehand . i’d never done anything like it before . it made me realise how hard it is to put oneself in the position of someone who’s never held a mouse or clicked an icon . a very refreshing exercise . i was impressed that so many people took the trouble to turn up . there’s definitely interest . i’ve been asked to give another session next week on email and the internet . that’s more familiar ground at least .

time to go now . i’ve got mixed feelings about leaving the islands and being back in london for a few days . but i daresay i’ll enjoy it .

: cH

990221.1443
i’m sending this from seb’s house in battersea ( an area of south london ) . arrived in town yesterday around five . found it all pretty hectic actually .

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