Crackington Haven – Tintagel (11.4 miles)
Distance from Minehead – 146 miles / Distance to Poole– 487.2 miles
As I write this I am sat with my feet up on the sofa watching Eurovision. It is the first year in a long time that I have not had a Eurovision party! It has become a little bit of a tradition. So to be in the middle of my walk – a thing of great wonder and beauty, and then to interrupt it with Eurovision – a thing of great cheese and tackiness, it all seems a bit strange!
There is something special about music and song, even if sung by someone with a dodgy European haircut! It lifts the soul and in fact when the soul is lifted it can lead to an outburst in song….at least in some cases.
As I have travelled along the North Devon and North Cornwall coastline I have come across a number of people who have known and talked about a man called Peter Hall. He was a farmer on Bodmin Moor and a local preacher in the Methodist Circuit. And he was a character. In fact he featured on a programme about ‘characters’ who come from Bodmin Moor. As he rode around on his quad bike he would burst into song and sing out Hymns at the top of his lungs! A rousing rendition of ‘And Can It Be’ (and other good Methodist hymns) to the sheep and cows was clearly just the thing to get Peter worshiping.
Yet as strange as Peter seemed to me I am starting to understand his slightly odd behaviour. As I rounded a corner today I was greeted by the most amazing scene – there was the blue sea crashing on the jagged rocks at the base of a steep cliff which was covered in wildflowers and foliage; there were seals bobbing in the water below and birds singing in the sky above; there were butterflies and bees and a whole host of insects and wildlife.
It was the perfect picture of creation and without warning I found myself singing, “Praise to the Lord, the Almighty, the King of Creation….”
Later on my mum joined me between Boscastle and Tintagel and as we reached the summit of a climb she started singing (if you can call it that!) “Then sings my soul, my Saviour God to thee, How great Thou art, how great Thou art.” It seems that when confronted with a display of God’s creation and goodness there is something within us that sings out in praise….even when our singing is out of tune!
So as I relax and watch the votes pour in for theUnited Kingdom (ha, as if!) I will not mock the weird and wonderful entries in this year’s Eurovision Song Contest, but I will celebrate the variety of expressions of the soul through music and song……except for Jedward of course, because some things are just wrong!!