Portwrinkle – Cremyll (13.3 miles)
Distance from Minehead – 411.6 miles / Distance to Poole– 220.8 miles
Ok, ok, I admit it, I am a geography geek. I absolutely love rocks and the way they are formed, the way they are shaped by the elements and the way they beautifully stand so strong and sure. I could bore you all with the different rock types and the movements of these rocks – in fact I find it irritates me when they are generically called ‘rockfalls’ when in fact they are slumps, slides or slips, be they rotational or linear! I love the shapes of the land and the differences between glacial valleys, hanging valleys and river valleys. I love the way that the weathering creates its own geographical features in the same way, albeit on a smaller scale, as the powerful waves of the sea. I love the variety of the land and God’s creation and how it all works together in simple, yet hugely effective systems– it makes me smile and never fails to give that ‘wow’ factor.
Yet alas, I have discovered that geography is a bit like marmite, and people seem to either love it or hate it. More often than not people remember it as the dreaded subject at school, often not helped by the weird geography teachers (my geography teachers were no weirder than normal I hasten to add!). So I feel that I am forced to stifle my enthusiasm for all things geographic. This response has been learned after many a time pointing things out to folk, only to see their eyes glaze over and their minds zone out. Now I just point out pretty rocks or nice vistas and I leave out the commentary of how or why they look the way they do.
The reason I am sharing this today is because the cliffs between Portwrinkle and Tregantle formed part of my geography degree dissertation. I spent many hours studying them and their significance – in both the large scale (as part of the whole SE Cornwall coast) and the small scale (eg. the habitat for tiny organisms which will never move more than a few cm in their whole life). As I walked along the cliffs here today I remembered with fondness the passion I have for the subject I spent 3 years at Uni studying. Up until a few weeks ago I had forgotten how passionate I am about this stuff. This walk has rekindled for me something which I once considered dedicating my whole life to. It is not that I want to give up what I do in order to return to studying the movement of water through soil particles, but I no longer want to hide what makes me tick and what makes me smile.
God has given us so many passions and interests. These are not necessarily what we should spend our lives doing – because for one of my friends it would be something to do with Dr Who or Star Trek! These are things which give us enjoyment and pleasure. It may shock you to realise that God wants us to be happy and to have fun in our lives! He is not all about the rules and regulations and about being serious and pious all the time. He is a God of fun and laughter and simple pleasure, be it from science fiction or the way rocks look. I pray that you know what it is that brings a light into your eyes and an excitement when you talk about it to others. I hope you have found some of the passions that God has placed in your heart. I want to encourage you to embrace it (no matter how geeky or embarrassing) and enjoy it, for it was given to you as a gift. And if you don’t know what it is that brings you joy, then I hope and pray you have fun finding it!