Saturday, 21 November 2015

Friday, 20 November 2015

The next day was dryer, our plan was to trade shiatsu treatments but in the end time ran out and Pema gave me a treatment which included "the story of the buddha and the thief". In the afternoon we met up with a friend of hers who quilts and had made beautiful little quilted pieces out of pretty reproduction victorian cottons. 
I had taken my prayer pieces with me, with some shyness knowing that she was a skilled needlewoman. As we exchanged our work we both confessed to feeling inferior to each other's skills and instantly formed a rapport which took all three of us into conversation about textiles, yes, but also femininity, culture, politics, passion, prayer, poetry, and so much more, time flew by. 
The following day was my journey home but we managed to squeeze in a shiatsu treatment for Pema before heading to the station. 
The journey home was long but my heart and soul felt nourished by my brief visit. It is extraordinarily tonic to leave home for a little while and spend time in the company of new and good friends.

Finally we went to Pema's meditation group for soup and three rounds of meditation, two sitting and one silent contemplation in between. The group happened to be held in the home of an artist to which her studio was attached, seeing her work has helped me to re-access my creative being which has been feeling exhausted and lack-lustre recently. 
She had bundles and books and paintings and pottery, and more than that the whole place was an art work, and so was she. It was also really lovely to meditate in company.
Later in the day we went to a buddhist retreat centre and the sun broke through just as it was setting 

The following morning was wet, pouring rain and the mountain was shrouded in mist. My hosts assured me that there was a mountain. It was all very eery and magical, it felt very welsh, the soft damp, the air sweet, and the calls and whistles of the shepherd as he and his dog moved sheep from one field to the next.

The week before last I went to Wales to visit a friend. She lives deep in the country, and her home is nestled just beneath a small mountain. Our meeting was one of those lucky breaks that life sometimes hands a body. It was brief, just two days on a shiatsu mentoring workshop but we kept in touch and she felt close although we had had no face to face contact for the five years between our first meeting and this recent re-encounter. 
I really love light-touch friends, people with whom it is easy to reconnect no matter how long we have been apart, people who feel connected even when they faraway and long ago. Good friends make all the difference.
It was a brief stay with a day of train travel either side, which is alot a sitting for someone not fond of sitting. But arriving in to Wales I was able to watch the sun set over the sea as we tracked the north coast to Llandudno Junction. 
She and her husband met me at the station and we fell straight in to chat as if we had known each other forever, some people are just easy company. I was made welcome when we arrived to their home by their two of their beautiful children who made us all hot drinks and supper. In the evening we watched a film "Marvellous" in front of a roaring fire.