Old Donation Episcopal Church
Saturday, September 8....
I chose to remain in Canterbury today. I had no expectations except to immerse myself in all that this ancient town offers. I found much that spoke to my inner being.
Starting with a lovely boat ride on a canal off the River Stour I learned that a waterway that was once the town sewer is now transformed into one of the cleanest rivers in England! Ducking under the low bridges was fun and drew us into close quarters with pigeons and lovely marsh hens. We floated by gardens, orchards, scenic stone buildings and lots of ruins. Everywhere I was reminded of how God is able to restore balance and beauty in places that man has devastated.
Canterbury Cathedral held a hops hoodening service --part of an ancient festival celebrating the main ingredient in one of Britain's famous products. I was thrilled to receive a sprig of hops that had been blessed at the Cathedral. "Morris Men" (and now women too) Dancers performed in the streets. Thanksgiving and celebration filled the air all day. I was impressed that the Cathedral was a part of it all.
Staying at the Cathedral Lodge is another blessing. Our windows allow close-up views of the Cathedral while being in the midst of a garden. It feels very like a cloister attached to the Cathedral, the sound of bells from the Cathedral's towers punctuating the day. This afternoon I sat outside in a second floor garden area listening to a bell concert lasting over an hour. A wonderful place to pray and journal.
Today in Canterbury has put me in touch with who I am and where I think God is calling me. I know that my path will inevitably involve staying in touch with nature, music and companions on the way. Joy abounds.