Sunday, 28 February 2010

Hard Core.

Four pints of milk, five litres of tonic water, and The Observer, and for the first time in four weeks I've ended a walk with wet feet. I don't know what it's like where you are, but it's chucking it down in Edmonton.
After saying farewell to Dad and Anji in Berwick, we got back into King's Cross yesterday evening, and went our separate ways - The Archdeacon back to Dorset, me back to All Saints Vicarage, and Susie - Susie went off to a party in Islington... some things never change.
On Friday morning The Archdeacon and I were privileged to be allowed to celebrate the Eucharist at the parish church of St Mary's, Lindisfarne. We offered the Eucharist with thanksgiving for a journey safely completed, for the great saints who had inspired us, and for the life of Jean Wilson, one of the organists at All Saints, who had died while I was in Scotland - I will miss her cheerfulness, her music, and the music of her laughter.
I preached a short homily about the stone I had carried from Iona.
Sitting in that historic church at the end of my pilgrimage, I experienced once again that great and inspiring sense of 'smallness' that I described on my walk from Inveraray to Inverarnan (7DHP) - what a brief moment I am in the great story that we are called to be part of.
Plans to spend a large part of the afternoon exploring the island were scuppered by torrential rain, so after a couple of pints of Blessed Beer in The Ship (we highly recommend The Crown and Anchor) we wandered out to the beach beyond Lindisfarne Castle, howled our afternoon prayers out at the wind that was howling at us, and then got back indoors.
On Saturday we packed up and made our last trip of the pilgrimage, to the parish church of St Aidan's, Bamburgh. As I knelt at the small cross marking the place where St Aidan is reputed to have died I felt that the pilgrimage was now properly ended and it was time to head back to London.
PS I'll be keeping this blog going until my Sabbatical is finished, on Palm Sunday. So, the hard core of you can continue to follow my efforts to relate what I've experienced in the lonely mountains to my life in the crowded city (although I'm off to Islay on Saturday...), and we'll discover whether or not Danny DeVito agrees to play The Archdeacon in the film version of Pilgrim's Cairn.


  1. No wish to cast nasturtiums, but surely the end of a great enterprise - or even a stage of one - should be marked with a joyful and heartfelt Te Deum?

    Perhaps it's too big to fit onto a laminated card.


  2. Danny deVito to play the Archdeacon? Assume that would be a small part.