Peace of Mind – click any image for full size
Peace of Mind is a Mainland parcel a little over a quarter region in size, held and landscaped by Talacious (Talacious Tigerpaw). It’s a quirky design that offers as much vertically as it does horizontally for the willing explorer, so a stout pair of walking boots might be recommended!
The About Land description offers a warm invitation to arrival to explore, relax and have a little fun, with Talacious noting she has a passion for landscaping, design and art, and hopes that people find a little peace and tranquillity when visiting.
Visitors arrive on the beach, a narrow sliver of sand sitting between high craggy shoulders of rock that reach back inland. Water tumbles – a little erratically in places – from one of these high mesas, eventually finding its way down to the beach where it rolls over the sand and into the sea.
Three opportunities for initial exploration are offered from the beach: a short climb up stone steps to a caravan, oddly perched on a shelf of rock and now so much a part of the landscape, nature is taking up residence on the outside as much as someone ins living on the inside. More stone steps run up alongside the caravan and to the conservatory sitting above and behind it, while a wooden bridge spans the water in its rush to the sea, offering the way to one of several routes up into the high cliffs and rocks surrounding the setting.
Those climbing to the conservatory will find it is home to a warm-looking bathing pool, while the path branches left and right – offering a further choice in routes of exploration. While you take is entirely up to you; suffice it to say both – and the path winding upwards from the log bridge down by the beach – offer routes of discovery.
Trails wind between the trunks of tall pines and other trees and slide between tall cliffs and hunched rocky outcrops, leading the traveller past local wildlife, over pond and root and through the occasional shower of rain, before inevitably winding upwards. As they do so, the paths climbing the cliffs may change from bare rock to tiled step (or back again) or from grassy trails to dirt tracks, all of which twist and climb – sometimes very steeply – up to the high plateaus above.
These high tables are home to more curios awaiting discovery – a pair of trees houses here, with the remains of an old van that must have had a bugger of a time climbing up the steep trail; a house cut into a hill there, surrounded by sunflowers that reach down into a little box canyon where yet another cottages sits, roof covered in grass and more sunflowers growing above it bay windows. Just below the house-in-a-hill sits a Tuscan villa, a paved set of steps reaching up from it to a narrow promontory on which sits a further tree house, even as hollow logs offer a bridge to a large house standing on the headland, and the destination of the rocky path winding upwards from the beach. This last appears to be the house of Talacious; however, like the other buildings sitting both high and low, it appears to be open to the public.
With the many different paths and bridges connecting them, finding one’s way around and between the houses is something of an adventure, and reveals some of the more quirky elements of the parcel – such a set of stone steps supported on nothing more than a wish, leading the way to vine-arched bridge spanning the gap between one plateau and another. Meanwhile, the path winding down from from the garden of the twinned tree housesoffers a way past a cavern, also awaiting exploration.
However, said cavern is not the “secret caves” referred to in the About Land description. This requires a little discovery. Clues are provided, and I don’t want to spoil the fun. Suffice it to say: look for the “arrowed” paths in the grounds of one of the houses, or the sign board watched over by rabbits (then touch the rock behind it). And when you do find your way into the caves, be sure to follow the paths all the way down and to give the wall below a certain sign concerning life a tap …
Peace of Mind is, as I’ve mentioned, a quirky place. It is rich in detail, albeit with a few rough edges that could do with a little attention (waters falling into grass and vanishing, or floating above the beach as it flows to the sea, for example, while the odd tree floats rootless above the ground). But these are not sufficiently problematic as to spoil the overall effect, and it’s clear that Talacious has poured a lot of her own personality into the parcel’s look and feel, together with her sense of fun.
So if you are looking for something just that little bit different to explore, Peace of Mind might be for you.
- Peace of Mind (Buncrana, rated: Moderate)