Truro is the County Seat of Cornwall. It’s also the county’s cathedral town. Truro Cathedral is not ancient but an example of Victorian Gothic Revival. The Architect said that when people went in, he wanted them to drop to their knees. When we went in it made me want to drop into a dance routine from West Side Story.
As we entered the mighty organ was playing one of the Sharks’ songs from the Broadway Musical and I couldn’t help myself, at the proper time I said “Mambo” loud enough for Suzi to hear but probably not the priest. The docent who greeted us apologized that it was not church music but “something from James Bond I think.” Leonard Bernstein actually. She explained that it was practice for a concert Friday night. We had seen the signs advertising the concert and Suzi was saying, just before we went in that she was sorry we would miss it. I said “our timing is good, something will happen.” It did.
On one of the dance numbers the action on the organ was not fast enough to keep up with some of the song. But when he went into “Tonight” it sounded like a theater organ and “There’s a Place for Us” sounded like, well, a hymn.
At precisely 11:00 AM the church bells rang, the organ silenced and a priest took to the lectern, apologized for the interruption of West Side Story (She got it right) and led us in a short prayer service for peace, the comfort of refugees and for figuring some way out of the division caused by Brexit.
The Cathedral is trying to pay for a new roof and they are doing it by selling slate shingles, you can buy a full one or a half one. After buying, you take a “silver” marking pen and write what you want. They are selling the idea by showing one of the Royal princes, the balding one, signing a slate shingle. They all will become part of the roof, your message will be face down but it will part of the cathedral, unnoticed until the roof needs replacing again. I liked the idea well enough to chip in. We bought half a shingle dedicated to our grand kids.
We went to Truro on the Train from Falmouth, a pleasant 25-minute ride. Truro started as a river port on the River Fal, but there has been enough silting and boats have gotten larger so that economy has dried up, so to speak.
In Truro we had a typical Cornish miner’s lunch, a pasty (a hand crimped pastry filled with meat and potatoes). They went down into the tin mines every day in the lunch pail. We enjoyed them with tea in the cathedral square. Cornish fast food.
Cornish Fast Food.