November 28, 2008
It's Friday, and as I plod my weary way home, beneath a grey and pink sky, I have these words from Rumi in my ear:
Your task is not to seek love,
But merely to seek and find
All the barriers within yourself
That you have built against it.'
Dangerous words. And the best. Now for Le Weekend!
With clouds descending.....
Sheltering in the village store during another torrential dose of seasonal drear, I found myself at the pressed meat counter with the one eyed axeman. He was even more inclement than the weather outside as he bemoaned the lack of felling and chipping in the Parish. He proudly boasts 'No job too small' but I remember Miss Spittle asking several times for fresh palings for her orchard and to this day I'll swear it's a job waiting to happen. I purchased a couple of badger thighs and fled into the rain. To have two one eyed folk in the Village is unfortunate but to bump into the second within minutes is unforgiveable. I should have seen her coming. There again, no good news from Gwen the one eyed widow. Her back is no better and her children and teeth are all gone. "And, where is the boy who looks after the sheep?", I hear you ask. Well, if he's under a haystack fast asleep today, it must be a very large one.
The Knights have been dripping about with Man 'Flu. I have had to help Mrs Minchin with the steaming roadkill jellies and linament wraps. It gives me a chance to keep half an eye, well, one eye as I'm blessed with the full set, on the Round Table. Keeping those little scuffs and scratches at bay with my wax and vinegar solutions gives me more pleasure than I can say,and no faux finishes.
There's word, I believe I heard from Wing Wah the Chinese Whisperer, that the bearded ladies may be passing through this week. He doesn't always get the stories right but it would cheer things at the Hall.
On a brighter note, Totty Dribbett, the second 't' is silent,in Dribbett not Totty, played Evensong at a cracking pace on Sunday.Simple Simon was full belt pumping the bellows and emerged from behind the curtain at the end with a visage like a roast dinner. Let no one declare the death of the Ferial Response, not in our Village. The night watchman saw us safely home but not before we stopped off at the Stranglers' Arms to catch the end of happy hour and a schooner of sweet Sherry.
November 21, 2008
An amazing vision of the future reported
Brothers and sisters, stop what you are doing and listen please!
I have just had the most amazing vision - a vision of the future!
And do you know what? It doesn't exist! Not even in weak pencil outline !
Well it's a sort of revelation...
November 17, 2008
things we shall not get used to
Sometimes on blogs, there's a bit of a lull. It can happen. No one seems to be around, and the tell tale signs are the milk going off in the fridge, and the bread in the bread bin going slightly green.
But I'm back now, with fresh milk purchased - and the green bits cut off the bread. I've been away leading a retreat in Glastonbury, and though I do not seek your applause, a good time we had of it amid the rich autumn colours of Somerset.
And what did we discover? All sorts. It was Dostoyevsky who defined humans as 'beings who can get used to anything' and we certainly discovered this to be so. So many of us had 'got used to things' that were killing us. So they were duly left behind with the rotting leaves - because there are some things we should just never get used to.
And I'm now thinking of Victor Frankl, after the allies had liberated his concentration camp. A few days after the liberation, he walked from the camp to a nearby village. Brutalised and numbed by his experiences, he was only slowly getting back to human feelings. So much lost; so much to be recovered inside. But as he walked through the fields, he had only one sentence in his head: 'I called to the Lord from my narrow prison, and he answered me in the freedom of space.'
The freedom of space - it's what retreats are about.
November 05, 2008
Now I just love shopping and find it impossible to buy anything until i've looked at all the options in the shop just to be sure i've made the right choice, unlike my friend Lisa who knows what she wants and chooses to get to the shops when they open and prides herself on being home in under an hour before any of the serious shoppers are out of bed.
But even she'd be impressed at what I saw this morning.
I was on the bus going to work when the driver stopped beside a clothes stall, he negotiated and brought a nightdress in about three minutes flat without even moving out of his seat.
Now that's impressive!
It's hard losing your alter-ego. Certainly not to be tried at home, folks! Indeed, it can feel like your own personal annihilation.
This has been my experience anyway. Since my alter-ego of the Bojangles Mattress Bank sadly passed away, I have been truly wondering 'What's left?' I've been drinking my coffee and cleaning the sink, sure - but wondering if I still exist.
Terrible terrors flood over me and through me, unbidden and unwanted. At one point I was sat on the sofa, convinced that if I changed channel I would disintegrate. Mad! (Especially as I was watching 'The X Factor' which no one should stay with for too long.)
But you know what? It seems I'm fine, and have not been annihilated. Whatever has died was clearly not essential to me. Indeed, my psyche feels rather fresh and envigourated this morning. The energy of life flows through my body and soul, cleansed in some way, from absurd imaginings.
I exist. I'm substantial. And - I strongly suspect - indestructible.
I'm back - so expect fireworks!!!!!!
(Discerning readers will note I haven't lost any of my pungent topicality. 'Expect fireworks'...wonderful stuff...edgy...so, like, now...that sort of thing...)
November 02, 2008
Our sun is sinking from us..
Upon my word we passed a most agreeable Hallowe'en at the Knights' Hall. 'No fine silk or bonnets to be worn' it said on the invitations written in the elegant cursive script of Sir Cum Locution. We arrived shortly after sundown. Drab Eileen and the Grim reaper came along with me on Dick Thresher's wagon. The road is a sea of mud and village flotsam I hoped that Gwen the one eyed widow was taking a ride with Mr Kipling in the Child Catcher's barouche.
We were ushered in to the Great Hall, and bear with me, dear reader, but I could not but feel a smug glow of satisfaction seeing the golden tones of the Round Table radiating mahogany in the candle light.The work with the beeswax has paid off, and no mistake.
We began with a game of apple bobbing in the scullery. Now you will see why bonnets were forbidden though the mob caps we had fashioned to preserve our modesty were quickly drowned and with our hands behind our backs and our heads in the tin bath we were a sight to raise a laugh from all but the glummest. Then with our faces dripping we had to remove the ring from the bowl of flour in our teeth. It seemed that only half of us had teeth and Sir Lee de Meanour was not amused at this sport, nor at our titters of amusement when he rose from the plate, his face white enough to frighten the Archdeacon and no mistake.No one can accuse us of not being edgy and contemporary in this village.
So now to All Souls day and a precious gleaming of sunshine as the leaves tumble. The healer in Oat Cottage is stacking a log pile and still offering cabbage leaf healing to the passers by. Mrs Spittle had her apple press ouside her door and there has been a good deal of running hither with the apples and thither with all manner of quaint containers. The Rector caught a chill,I'm not saying that it was the night of the apple bobbing but he staggered home looking most bedraggled and conducted Matins in full Muffler this morning. I'll take him a bowl of poached sweatbreads if he's no better tomorrow.
The village is preparing itself for the rigours of Winter. Have we salted enough pork belly? Are there kippers still for tea? Will the Bracombe Ouse rise above it's banks and drown us all? Are there enough rafts of measures? So many questions to perplex us as the light leaves us with shorter and shorter days.
I might seek solace at the Frog and Ferret this evening and share a Gin and It with the ratcatcher's mother.
November 01, 2008
I am currently in a state of happiness which has lasted for two weeks and is continuing. At times I cannot help smiling to myself and feel like I may burst with joy.
After 18 years of being asleep to the world and trying to avoid my pain, six years ago I was offered a job that would shape my future from then on. This job would lead me to discover who I was and teach me to love myself. Unknown at the time, this job was also going to take me on a journey of personal development and show me my passions and my gifts.
Since that point, I have realised my calling and feel so relieved to find it. Everyday I learn a little more and I shall keep on doing so on this wonderful journey of self discovery.
I have a glowing bulb of happiness alive and glowing inside of me ready to take on the next challenge.
I am now ready and if I ever go back it will only be for a brief and true visit until I return to my present which is my home.