Jun 8 • 2M

The Gardener

Van travels through Portugal (2019)

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Here I share recordings of my weekly writings for those who like to give their eyes a rest from the screen. They might be personal reflections, short stories, poetry, published articles. I look forward to connection and conversation.
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Exhausted from a broken night’s sleep in our van due to the relentless hum of an adjacent building, the morning sun lifts our spirits gently as we stroll down towards the Rio Tejo.

As we near the water there is a beautiful garden in bloom; bright orange flowers to the backdrop of higgledy-piggledy aged-terracotta tiles atop a crumbling white-washed cottage, and another, and another… all staggered downwards toward this magnificent body of water. We peer over the wall of the garden and spy neat rows of vegetables, trees laden with fruit and flowers bursting from pots and crevices.
 
The owner of the garden – his shirt front soaked with sweat, strong arms pulling an aged wheelbarrow behind – wanders slowly around the corner. He smiles at our admiration, lowers his barrow, removes his grubby straw hat and wipes his tanned forearm against a glistening brow.
 
He is slow, methodical, his soft voice like balm. “Falar Português?” he questions… and so we speak. With small sentences broken by actions he tells us how he has lived here for 24 years, at peace, happy. I envy his love for – his utter comfort with – being here now, perhaps forever. He talks about rain coming and how water from the mountains passes by his house like a torrent down to the river providing plenty of nourishment for his abundant garden. Mimicking rowing a boat down to the bank, we all laugh.
 
I could have stood with him for hours: his patience with our Portuguese, the mesmerising softness of his manner, the happiness that comes from standing in the glow of someone in love, and as I walked away I wondered if I might ever be lucky enough to find a place I love that much, a place to make me stay.

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Step Into Summer with me!

Following the joy of sharing my short course back in the Spring, I am now working on five short, thought-provoking, meditative, joyful recordings to guide us in developing A Sense for Summer.

  • Join from wherever you are in the world (as long as it’s summer!)

  • Listen to recordings whenever it suits you

  • Journalling exercises and/or sharing are optional

  • Lessons accessed in a private online space

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  • Starts Monday June 20th.

I hope you will join me in embracing nature, and authentic connections. Reply to this email to register your interest, or join up on my website.💛

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