A Knight’s Tale (107: Instow Part 1)

According to Wikipedia ‘Instow is a village in north Devon, England. It is on the estuary where the rivers Taw and Torridge meet, between the villages of Westleigh and Yelland and on the opposite bank of Appledore. There is an electoral ward with the same name. Its total population at the 2011 census was 1,501.[1]

There is a small river beach and sand dunes, that home some rare species of orchid including the pyramid orchid.[2]

The Tarka Trail passes through Instow, providing an easy means for people to arrive by foot or on bike. This section of the Trail is also part of the South West Coast Path, offering longer walks along the coast.’

From 1985 Jessica, Sam, Louisa and I enjoyed many annual holidays there with various family members.

Sam and Louisa, Instow 1985 3
Sam and Loiusa Instow 1985 2
Sam and Louisa Instow 1985 1

On that first visit Sam clambers over a stout, cemented, stone wall in the garden of our borrowed house.

Louisa then received a nature lesson from her mother, Jessica,

Jessica and Louisa 1985 1
Jessica and Louisa 2
Jessica and Louisa 1985 3
Jessiac and Louisa 4

seated on that wall, introducing her to the wonders of nature. An insect perches in our daughter’s hand; tall violet irises stand proud while yellow roses ramble along the stones.

Jessica and Sam 1985

Sam took his turn, too.

Jessica and Louisa 1985 2

Here Jessica admires sculptures at Marwood Hill Garden near Barnstaple.

Sam on donkey 1985 1
Sam on donkey 1985 2
Sam on donkey 1985 2

We took the car to Mousehole in Cornwall for one day. Sam loved donkey riding. A peculiarity of this ancient fishing village is the main road through to the harbour. Sam’s donkey stands on it, and is perhaps a more convenient way of manning the steep, cobbled, ascent. The granite strips among the setts provide steps between the houses. It is not suitable for vehicles, other than the shallow wooden sleds used by provisioners to deliver their produce.

Jessica, Sam and Louisa 1
Jessica, Sam and Louisa 1985 2
Jessica, Sam and Louisa 1985 3

The harbour has a similarly stout protective stone wall that can be ascended by substantial steep steps, such as those Jessica, Sam and Louisa are scaling. Jessica seems a little perturbed by our intrepid daughter’s purposeful strides.