The Barbican

Tuesday, 24 November 2015

My thoughts on arriving in Plymouth.

The water was a crystal clear blue, glistening with the autumns suns rays and was disturbed only by a gentle breeze. The ripples echoed with history, and stories from the past filled my imagination. It was my first time seeing Plymouth’s Barbican, known as the old harbour, and it felt like I was a hundred miles from the bustling city that I had walked through only minutes ago. It was a part of Plymouth I had never seen before, and it felt as though it had been barley touched by the modern hand. As I walked along the narrow footpath gazing across the water I came to a stone archway.
Standing underneath, I ran my hand over the grey metal plague of the Mayflower steps, remembering the sailors that journeyed to the new world and voyaged to the unknown. The intricate gold lettering made me picture what my surrounding must have looked like when they set sail. The cobblestone path filled with voices saying their goodbyes, not knowing when they would see them again, or what they would be like when they did. The sound of horse’s hooves would clip along the pavement, as the fishing boats bring in the catch of day and cause seagulls to flock.
The old, misshapen houses still had their character from when they where first built, undisturbed since then, even surviving the second world war. Though now they had been turned into coffee shops and art galleries, with families enjoying the last of the summer weather.
Still with the image of ships going to the new world in my mind, I couldn’t help but think of my own journey.
Here I was in this new city ready to start University. My first week was already coming to an end and everything had happened so quickly that all my panic and stress from the first day seemed all but forgotten. My thoughts felt as tranquil as my surroundings, and an unexpected wave of calmness washed over me. I could sense my eyes brighten with optimism over my future here, and it was a relief to realise I was doing the right thing.
Like explorers from centuries before, I didn’t know what lay ahead, but that thought was exciting. It was encouraging. As the sun began to set, the visions from the past began to disappear. The coffee shops were closing and the wind began to chill. With my skirt billowing around my knees and my hair tickling my face, I turned to make my way back through the city.

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