I escaped. In all honesty, I didn't go far. I headed west through Ross on Wye, over the border into Cymru (Wales) skirting Monmouth, weaving my way carefully through Usk, then out into the wilds to Llansoar Mill near Carleon. The journey took just under an hour.
Llansoar Mill is home to a small Christian Community of which I am glad to be a member. "Simplicity, Inclusivity, Paradox" heads up the website, and there we are, sharing the mystery of faith through prayer, music, poetry, literature, film, debate, food, divine love, human virtue... To begin the list ... It's by no means 'church' in a narrow sense, but a faith community in its widest, most expansive and truly exploratory manifestation. I wasn't intending to do the commercial, but I have begun it. For more, if you're interested, there's Google ...
There were 20 of us visiting over the weekend: convening to soak ourselves in the ancient wisdom of the Sufi poet, Rumi.
Duncan, our leader recited poetry, hauntingly accompanied on a stringed instrument that I should have enquiried the name of .. He told stories, humorous and revealing, light-hearted and deeply moving. Amazing.
I stayed, not at the Mill this time, but off-site, with another community member, Ruth. We drew very close over the weekend: the seeming disaster of booking 'too late' turning into a splendid opportunity to share more of our selves.