Friday, 16 May 2008
Part 2-GLASTONBURY 2008
As I pulled back the curtains in my lovely B&B the first sight to greet me was the fornication of two doves on the Dove cote. They followed me down to breakfast –their insatiable sexual appetite clearly not sated, they continued their cavorting several more times in front of the breakfast room window with no shame.
My tired feet and I were on a mission to see whether there was more to Glastonbury than esoteric shops crammed with crystals, candles and incense sticks.
I began the day on the Millenium Trail- a series of town trail markers, set in the pavement to guide a path through the town.
The route should have taken approximately one hour and indeed it would have, had I not been distracted by a charming bookseller called Steve. I cannot resist bookshops and there are several in Glastonbury. While handing over a copy of Old Glastonbury and Arthur’s Britain I struck up a conversation and discovered that Steve was in fact a freelance writer, and had worked in publishing for most of his working life.
He has just found himself single again after thirty years of marriage and is leaving to lay down new roots in Western Australia. Someone spiritual came into his shop, touched his arm and told him they were having strong vibes for him about Australia. They left the shop but then came back- being even more insistent that they could picture him with red hill behind him...he had to go there, there was a new and exciting life awaiting him...
Steve, strongly feeling that this was his ‘guide’ sold the shop within two weeks of the meeting and plans to leave in August. He invited me to go with him. I declined his kind offer but instead agreed that the main character in my second book would come to Glastonbury in search of family history and ‘something,’ and meet and fall in love with a fifty two year old bookshop owner!
Back on the trail, I felt in need of some spiritual guidance myself, and was ‘drawn’ to another Steve, this time a tarot reader in Ying Yang who had been recommended to me by the aforesaid namesake.
I sat on my hands and gagged myself as I listened in total amazement to his accuracy on past matters and tried to glean some proof that I am doing the right thing at present and with regard to the future.
I went in feeling sceptical and more than a little wary. Whatever opinion I had on Tarots and spiritualism, I came convinced that Steve had a true gift. He gave me a quiet air of confidence that I should be happy with where I am at and where I am going to and that I am making some good decisions on grasping my chances as they come along. The experience more than achieved what I wanted it to.
A period of reflection followed with Lunch at Laluna-by now I was now on first named terms with the staff and proprietor.
My feet were starting to die on me-the previous day’s exertions and a morning walking the town had taken their toll. I was beginning to wish I had taken advantage of the ShopMobility and hired a motorised wheelchair! By now, the pain was searing like hot knives through my toes yet I knew I had to go on-there was still so much to squeeze into the day.
I decided to take a couple of hours respite in the Library-(research for my book and some family history information.) Then it was on to the Rural Life Museum, which was actually very enlightening and brought to life the side of Glastonbury-‘real’ Glastonbury that my Nan has talked about for so many years.
Finally, in the glorious sunshine I reached my final visit of the day-the Chalice Wells Garden.
I did take a couple of photos of the view from the gardens and a part of the garden well away from the wells. However, the rest of the gardens, it just didn’t feel right to be snapping away so the pictures exist only in my memory. I also took my note pad and pen-I had intended to sit quietly in the warm sunshine and spend a couple of hours scribbling, but the notepad stayed in my bag.
I think you would have to visit for yourself to get a true picture of the beauty and tranquillity of the gardens. However much I gush and pontificate I feel sure I will never convey what the gardens hold. If you click on the link above, it will take you on the virtual tour but it still doesn’t come close to seeing it for yourself.
Except I will tell you this- My feet were hurting so much by the time I got to the gardens that I had to take my shoes off to be able to hobble round. I stopped several times around the gardens to observe the ‘quiet areas of reflection.’
Through into Arthurs Courtyard I saw the much talked about Chalice Well waters and filled two bottles with it-one for me and one for my Nan. I couldn’t resist dabbling my feet over the side of the shallow pool. Apparently, in the 18th and 19th centuries, it used to be much deeper and you could totally immerse yourself.
It was cold, so cold it numbed my feet and allowed my brain receptors to notice another sensation rather than pain.
After a few moments, I stepped out of the water. Back on warm flagstones, my feet tingled. Then they became very hot and the tingling became more of a prickly feeling that radiated up to my ankles. It was the strangest feeling as I realised my feet did not hurt for the first time that day. Suddenly I remembered that the water I had dipped my feet in was the healing well water and I smiled to myself thinking what my hubby and the other cynics would have to say about my ‘little miracle.’ All I can add is that as I put my shoes back on my feet did not hurt, not one little bit and I walked back up the road to the B&B as if I was walking on air...
To be continued...