A brave new world
I had been asked to attend a seminar. No pressure, I wasn’t presenting, didn’t need to make any speeches. Gail gave me the joining instructions as I left the office.
“See you Thursday” I said.
“Yes see you Thursday I hope you enjoy the trip, I got you a nice B&B just like you asked”
The village had been built jigsaw pretty, white washed cottages, thatched with thick gold reeds. Each property rolled into the next, lining the quiet lanes with bursts of colour, luscious green foliage daubed with yellow white roses and vibrant climbers. The center was marked by a old worn-down pagan cross, carved out of stone. I scrapped my hand across its rough surface just to feel the history.
I was only staying one night but Gail had got it right this time. The B&B was named Granarye, it could have been on the cover of any posh chocolate box. The owners name was Simon, he met me as I got out of the car with a well padded handshake. He booked me in and showed me to my room at the top of the house, the warmth of the day followed us upstairs. I was so hungry I went straight for the little twin pack of ginger snaps that sat on the tea making facility.
“There’s extra towels if you need them and if you look out of the window you can just see a sign for the Shoulder of Mutton, you’ll not leave there hungry and they have a nice selection of real ales”.
He looked like he’d enjoyed himself there on more than one occasion so I thanked him for the advice. He took my order for breakfast and left me to my own devices. I enjoyed a quick shower and answered a few emails before I slipped out into the fragrance of a balmy evening and made my way up the lane to the suggested location.
Trade was good for a Tuesday night and I sat on my own sampling Steak and Ale pie from the specials board, all washed down with various brews of Hob Goblin and Speckled Hen.
Colin, who had his name over the door, thanked my for my custom and bolted it shut behind me.
I was the last to leave the pub, stepping out into the cold night air. It caught hold of me making my head lighter than it should have been. I exhaled a heavy-ale breath and marveled at the blackness of the sky. There wasn’t any light to bleed onto the night, stars crowded like snow flakes over my hands falling in between my fingers, wrapping
all around me, only me. I walked on.
Such stumbling quiet can only be heard by the deaf and I was inside its vacuum,
carried blind by its beauty. A wrought iron bench spread its arms and curled intricate
fingers over my shoulders as I closed my eyes.
At first I could only sense a gentle movement, something? an altered state, approaching me soft a shy duck enticed by bread. I heard a rustle beneath a hedge then the earthenware scrape of a dragged plant pot. I was lost in the moment
The night had begun to trust me, its light came out from behind corner clouds. I was watching roof top shadows fall long over deep olive gardens, even black doorways shifted in to grays.
That’s when I first heard it “the chatter” it mumbled in an old language, whispering in a dialect of dark greens. Every garden, the whole village seemed to be coming alive.
I suddenly became aware of my surroundings, I was sitting beneath the Pagan cross. I tried to move for a closer look but the iron bench moved inside me, thin needles had entered my skin an energy surged across the connection. I could feel every movement every part of the village. The cold stone of the cottages, the warmth of bodies as the slept in their beds, the padded footsteps of cats as the strutted the tops of garden walls.
I began to panic, a body rejecting its donors heart, a light flashed behind my eyes, my mind a flicker book of images. Millions of people connected to the earth, energy being drawn from one to the other. I could see the whole planet trying to heal itself, using the created world, man made and natural resources, objects colliding, collaborating.
I could see the whole plan as it mapped itself to my mind. I felt elated, even hopeful for a future I could only have imagined. I began to relax and allowed myself to go deeper, to embrace each sensation. It was then I heard her speak.
“We’ve been waiting for you” she said.