On to Glastonbuty Tor..............and Avalon

After the silent relaxed atmosphere of Glastonbury Abbey, Glen and I headed for the rugged, steep climb to Glastonbury Tor, rising from the mystical isle of Avalon. No wonder Vivien, the "lady of the Lake" and the priestesses of Avalon were so fit.....the climb to the top of the Tor is not for the faint of heart! The steps are steep and small, enough space (just) for your foot and only wide enough to walk in single file. There are no rails or fencing, so if you loose your footing, you are likely to tumble down the side of the very steep drop down to the marshland where the original lake would have been. In fact, while we were there three ambulance officers were in the process of retrieving a woman who HAD lost her footing and had to be hauled up the embankment(her leg in a splint) before they CARRIED her in a wheelchair back down the path to the waiting ambulance. I must say, there's obviously no such thing as a "no lift" policy when it comes to rescuing stray travellers from the wilds of the Tor!

Once we arrived at the top, a little our of breath and with the lactic acid in our legs causing our calf muscles to 'twitch', the view was spectacular! The tower at the top of the Tor was no bigger in circumference than an average sized loungeroom and extremely tall. Of course this wasn't the original building (I couldn't imagine the priestesses of the goddess all managing to live in such a small space) but was used by hermit monks as a place of prayer and seclusion in the middle ages. Prior to that it is said that St Par tick came here after returning from Ireland and there was said to have been a Monastery here in the 6th century A.D named for St. Michael. After the dissolution of the monasteries, the last Abbott of Glastonbury was hanged here (of course after they dragged him from the valley to the very top of the Tor). It has been a wild and unforgiving place.
There were a few visitors up there when we arrived, but again we were blessed with the support of the "veil" which seemed to enveloped us and insulate us from the laughter and conversations that were going on around us...........most appropriate!

As I sat on the edge of the ridge, looking out at the beautiful view of the lowlands back towards the town of Glastonbury, a big black raven glided in the updraft and landed a few feet away from me. It hopped over towards me and just stood, it's yellow eyes gazing directly into mine. I must admit, I was quite mesmerised. I sat very still and maintained the connection and felt quite light and weightless, my aching calves disappeared and I felt totally at peace. The wind was blowing, the sun was shining and I was sitting on the very edge of Glastonbury Tor connected to a wild bird who seemed like she was talking to me...........it just doesn't get any better than this!

No comments: