Archive for October 9th, 2007

Beach at St. Ives, CornwallFor fifteen years, my husband and I have spent some time each summer traipsing around the Lake Erie shoreline.

We stayed at lakeside B&Bs, inns, and cottages. We feasted on fresh perch. We savored the excellent local wines. And we let the sound of lapping waves ease our tensions away.

Sometime during each of our visits, we would bemoan the fact that we hadn’t had the foresight or the funds to snap up a piece of lakeside property back in the 1970s, when it was dirt cheap. By the time we had the means and the motive, property located in the popular spots near the lake was way out of our price range.

That changed this past summer. On a day trip to the lake of my husband’s dreams, we stumbled across a small Northeast Ohio town that actually offers affordable property near Lake Erie.

Within a few weeks, we owned a 92-year-old house in Conneaut, Ohio, just a few miles from the pricey, popular spots. The house has a view of the lake and is a block and a half away from its soothing blue waters.

Our new home immediately caught my imagination. And as any good Woolfian would, I imagined myself in Virginia’s shoes — looking out on the sea at St. Ives or writing from my country home in Sussex.

A similar situation has developed across the pond. At least, that is the report offered by Telegraph writer Anthea Masey.

According to her, St. Ives in Cornwall — the place where Virginia spent her summers up until the age of 12 — is such a seaside hot spot that a simple two-bedroom cottage sells for £350,000. That is $711,888 in U.S. dollars.

But just six miles to the southeast, across St. Ives Bay and the estuary of the river Hayle, housing prices in the town of Hayle itself are about 40 percent lower than in St. Ives. And one can enjoy a three-mile stretch of beach, with good surf towards Godrevy Point, Masey writes.

Hayle is to St. Ives as Conneaut is to Kelly’s Island. Or Put-in-Bay. Or Sandusky. Or Port Clinton. And I am just happy to have a spot by the water where I can read, write, and ruminate about such things. For a mere £27,773.

Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: