Back where it all began
Today marked another of these post-lockdown returns as we left Dunoon on an early ferry (ie any ferry before 9am) to go via Largs to sing in Britain's smallest cathedral, The Cathedral of The Isles on Cumbrae - where, to all intents and purposes, my journey in faith began over half a century ago. We were singing in one of the ad hoc choirs that always sustain the high moments in the cathedral, this being the annual Friends' Evensong which morphed into a Jubilee celebration as well as an occasion to install two Canons and have a party.
I realise how much less able I am to keep going through one of these days - rehearsing, eating, rehearsing, singing, eating again, talking - so much talking! - and travelling home at the end of it. When I was in my 20s and 30s - and even later - it was just something we did; now the effort seems so much more. But goodness, did this beautiful building (Butterfield's architecture) come alive, with a full congregation, the red-robed choir (looking, it must be said, like so many Handmaidens), several clergy filling the stalls we weren't occupying, and the Bishop in gold.
I'm really hoping that three photos will convey just a little of the day, so that I can go to bed and sleep. The main photo is taken from beside the organ looking down the nave; the first extra is of the party in the cloisters garden afterwards (and here was I thinking I'd escaped bunting ...) and the second is of the choir and clergy having the group photo taken. I was in that, but nipped out while they were all still there to take one of my own.
It was a perfect day, not to say hot, with just enough wind to cool slightly. It was an interesting day as I discovered that the grandson of someone I've known in the Cathedral setting is my own grandson's friend at school and it was he who worked it out and not me. It was fun meeting up with all these people again. We've all grown visibly older during our absence - but we're still here, still singing, still creating magic.
Here's to the magic!