Pandemic Pondering #69

Pandemic wanderings.

Today found us having a small permissible family gathering midway between London and Cornwall.

We met at Ashton Court on the outskirts of Bristol. Acres of amazing walks and plenty of places to have socially distanced picnics.

The house has some lovely architectural details.

and some curious graffiti.

Frosty Flakes anyone?
https://thebristolmag.co.uk/mr-mrs-smyth-the-history-of-ashton-court-estate/

The views from the park are phenomenal. In the distance we spotted a beautiful church. How often in life are there so few pressures on time that you can just go and find a church that you’ve seen in a landscape? That’s how we ended up at St Michaels Church, Dundry. It has spectacular views over Bristol

and the churchyard has an unusual project.

Many of the old graves have been planted with bee friendly, and other polinator friendly, flowers. This whole area of the graveyard has a softness and distinctive look, created by the flowers that makes it mystical and beautiful in a way that is unfamiliar in Britain.

The church door of St Michaels is guarded by two faces. One has definitely done more years.

After leaving St Michaels we took a scenic journey to Chew Lakes to finish up our picnic that was started lunchtime.

Two days of meeting up with much loved family members has exhausted us. We might gently slip back into full lockdown tomorrow for a rest. But it’s been wonderful to see everyone.

Pandemic Ponderings #68

Some days are harder than others to distil down into a blog , on those days I often dig out a topic or theme and ponder on. But today deserves its moment in the sun.its just a struggle to find the right words.

We, like many others have been deprived of seeing our families . Today and tomorrow we have arranged to meet a small part of our small family, respecting government guidelines.

Obviously meeting loved ones has been looked forward to and anticipated with pleasure .

Lockdown is known to mess with most people’s heads . There are the obvious things like worry, insomnia, depression, grief . The serious proper head messes. I’ve had some of those but a few times I’ve had a curious little head mess that puzzles rather than worries me, and although you might think it is sad it doesn’t sadden me. It occurs in the Limnal spaces of my thoughts or when I’m waking or dropping off to sleep.

Sometimes imagining meeting with my actual living family after so many days of lockdown and self isolation gets complicated.

In these moments there are other people at these family gatherings. People like my parents or father-in- law who have been dead a very long while or Hannah’s parents who have crossed into the other realm more recently. I don’t put them in my thoughts they just appear and seeing them,after a gap of more than 30 years in some cases, feels as natural and normal as seeing the living people after only 3 months. The closest thing I can use to describe the sensation is Magical Realism.

https://bookriot.com/2018/02/08/what-is-magical-realism/

My entirely normal family is not going to be a powerful tool against political regimes any time soon, but my head, albeit briefly, sees nothing incongruous about me meeting my granddaughter in the presence of many dead relations. It seems to be entirely normal and quite unworrisome.

I’m really not sure where these thoughts are coming from.

Today , far away from Limnal spaces none of the deceased put in an appearance. The beach at Harlyn bay just held the live family members that I’ve missed so greatly. There was plenty of room for the others, they just didn’t put in an appearance.

Minds and thoughts are complex at the best of times, how much other strange and intriguing stuff will this curious period of our lives give us to ponder over.