I thought this would be a good venue through which to share about my and David's recent celebratory trip to Scotland. I'll just choose two highlights - reason for celebration - and bell ringing (since that ties in with our recent reading of Sayers' Nine Tailors).
REASON FOR CELEBRATION:
On November 2, 2017 we celebrated 10 years of stroke recovery for David. Among other reasons for our trips, climbing Arthur's Seat in Edinburgh seemed a particularly good way to celebrate that recovery:
|St. Margaret's Loch, ruins of St. Anthony's Chapel, and Arthur's Seat|
Ten years ago David suffered a massive stroke and spent a month in rehab relearning how to walk (as well as relearning a lot of other things). Last month he climbed to the top of Arthur's Seat, which towers over the city of Edinburgh. I consider this a picture of triumph!
BELL RINGING AT ST. CUTHBERT'S:
I had worshiped in St. Cuthbert's last spring during my sabbatical. It is Presbyterian, which is closely related to my faith tradition - and it is also where John Napier, a mathematician I'd been there to study the previous year, had served as elder in the 1500s.
While looking into worship times for this fall, I noticed that bell-ringing practice would be taking place on Tuesday night while we were there. I looked into attending practice and was told by one of the clergy that I might be allowed to sit in - certainly if I were a bell-ringer from elsewhere I would be - but that it wouldn't be a sure thing since I was not myself a bell-ringer. Because David and I had only three days and so much we wanted to see, I decided not to plan around that possibility but rather to hope to at least show up in the surrounding kirkyard to hear the practice from outside.
After a long day of walking, while David saved me a seat at Shandwick's for dinner a couple of blocks away, I (foolishly?) headed back down into the kirkyard. I ADORE creepy cemeteries and make a point of seeking them out. And in the daytime this is one of the creepiest I've ever seen. At night . . . in the dark . . . quite far below the level of the street . . . alone . . . umm . . . let's just say I REALLY wanted to hear those bells!
First a video of practice and then some pictures of the kirk:
My camera picked up a lot of light and made it look brighter down there than it actually was . . . just sayin' . . .
|Tombstone in St. Cuthbert's kirkyard taken earlier in the day|
|St. Cuthbert's as seen from Edinburgh Castle|
|Edinburgh Castle as seen from the south side of St. Cuthbert's|
|St. Cuthbert's viewed from the south|
Though our "related" mystery reading was by Sayers, I thought it worth noting that mystery writer Agatha Christie was married in the small WWI Memorial Chapel of this kirk, which is where the evening service David and I attended was held. I don't have pictures of the inside, but I snapped one of the entrance to this chapel.
For bell-ringing comparison, here is a video I took during my sabbatical on my way to worship Sunday morning. Sadly, you can barely hear this wonderful artistry above the street noise!