There’s a biscuit at the hoof of the cow in the second photo. My new mates. I’m like a squirrel with free biscuits and chocolate, the type you’re given in cafes and restaurants with your hot drink. They can hang around in my bag for months. Well today I had help with my stash.
We woke up needing a coffee shop morning after the adrenalin and pure raw terror of yesterday. The kind of terror that you need sometimes to remind you that you’re alive. If you’d have told me that at the time, however, mid white knuckle, shaking uncontrolably, with Ady telling me he couldn’t hear me breathing anymore. I think I was quietly hoping for death 😂☠️😳🙏 but I get ahead of myself. I’ll get to that bit later.
So here I am, tame, supping my brew, tapping away on my electrical device like most others around me, acting as if life isn’t some huge heroes journey that could kick your ass or elevate you to blissful heights without a word of warning. Yesterday I got the warning, I just underestimated what was possible in one short, unplanned day. Oh how the magic is flowing this week and Ady is now a believer. The synchronicities are simply undeniable.
It all started with that angel book I showed you a few blogs ago. I was due to start chapter two but something inside told me ‘no, chapter three today’. Oh, OK, what’s chapter three? It was about adventure. I wondered what adventure had to do with love? The book was all about love. I read the whole chapter and realised my kinds of adventures weren’t hers. She spoke of walking the wall of China, swimming with dolphins, climbing Mount Everest. I wondered whats the point? My hearts not in random places. I want to go deeper with the things and people I love. I’d love to wake up on my allotment and see the fox doing her natural foxy thing. The deer, woodpecker, Robins and I’ve even grown to love the grasshoppers. Sometimes I sit with them for hours in a spot I call grasshopper alley. I want to make a sign for that spot. It looks wild and unloved but I’ve kept it that way for my lil hoppy mates.
I’d like to investigate the bond we can share with loved ones who have died. It’s typically called mediumship but I’m not really open to someone else’s random great aunt Sally passing on the message that she saw you tidying your sock drawer yesterday. These were typical messages I heard in spiritualist churches as I prepared myself for my mums death. To have someone talking that kinda crap inside my head would be beyond my tolerance and it always baffled me that people would cry gratefully at the wisdom shared. Surely they had more to share than that?! Is the other side really that dull that you’re reduced to watching us tidy drawers?
I’d love to adventure into creative spaces. What am I capable of creating? I’ve astounded myself with mosaics, sketches and at school art was the only GCSE where I got an A. It’s a dormant gift in me just waiting for some time and curiosity.
And the adventure of love. What would it look like to risk opening my heart more fully each day knowing that it’s a fragile as a petal, a butterflies wing. Easily bruised, torn but made for opening, for flight, for relating, dancing and mingling. These weren’t the types of adventures she had in mind.
Without a real plan we walked to Bakewell. Before we knew it we’d decided to hop onto a bus. Those that know me well know I’m kinda phobic of buses. At the bus stop with the old women in the queue I had a little knee tremble. What if it rolled into a full on panic? As soon as I sat down I knew I’d be OK. Amazingly I really was ok. A year or so ago that would not have been possible for me. I smiled that I had changed, grown without realising it. Woohoo!
We arrived in Matlock and I comfortably thought that was my adventure for the day. Tick, done. Wrong, omg couldn’t have been more wrong 😂
I noticed a sign for The Heights of Abraham, a cable car system from the Alps. The first to be created in England in the 1980’s. Ady and I gazed at the cable cars suspended at incredible heights with both fascination and horror.
Please don’t ask me why I dragged him to the ticket office. We had no intention of putting ourselves up there, we just wanted to see what it looked like from the base. There was a queue. £21 each to ride the cable cars. We were both relieved that it wasn’t even an enticing price. As we stared open mouthed a lady walked past everyone else in the queue and asked us shyly if we had already bought tickets. Slightly confused we said we hadn’t. The couple in front of us turned to stare at this odd interaction. She asked if she could give us hers. She was there with a work party and two people hadn’t turned up. The couple in front looked gutted. Not as gutted as I felt. I suddenly had two tickets in my hand and a dubious sense of destiny that loosely translated as ‘oh shit’.
Why she walked past everyone else who clearly wanted a ticket, to the couple who were clearly hovering, I’ll never know. Angels. Bloody angels 🤣😇🤣
Once we reached the ticket office I asked the lady in there what these tickets bought us. She looked confused why we had them without her serving us. I told her we’d just been gifted them. She looked even more confused but told us they bought us everything at the top including two guided cave tours.
Our first question was ‘is there a loo before we have to climb into that tiny glass death trap?’ There was one portaloo but she told us the journey to the top didn’t take long. We both used that portaloo like our life depended on it 😂
Ten minutes later we were at the front of the queue to the cars, by which point even my feet were sweating. Breathing came in short sharp pants and my hands were shaking. I nearly bolted for the portaloo again but Ady dragged me and before I knew it I was in that little glass bubble that gave me claustrophobia like I’ve never known. I was terrified of the door closing, to be quickly followed by terror that it wasn’t closing and we were about to ascend. Apparently the door closes automatically once lift off happens. Sick joke and I’m sure they must keep themselves amused watching faces like mine on a long boring day at work 👀😴😂🙄
I told you it was high! The second sick joke was that it stopped halfway up, at the pinnacle. There we were, dangling, breeze wafting through, wondering if this was the day it broke down and I’d literally die of terror. I was panting, eyes closed, trembling everywhere. I could dimly hear Ady telling me to square breathe. He talked me through it. I heard him say ‘I can’t hear you breathing. Have you stopped breathing? Try and breathe’. Poor bloke was terrified himself. He was my Knight in shining armour as I buried my face in his shoulder and shook’. I had zero control over anything, never mind my breath. I’d lost it. Washed away in pure raw terror. I remembered my mum had pee’d herself in fright up here when I was a child and I thought I’d superseed her as the first person to die of self induced cardiac arrest. ‘I’m coming mum, see you shortly!’
Well you’ve never seen anyone get off one of those things faster. As soon as those doors opened I shot out and contemplated kissing the floor. Ady suggested a cuppa to ground me but I knew if I stopped now you’d never get my claustrophobic arse down that first cave, so whilst I was still terrified I dragged him there.
We arrived a bit too late. The party had just set off. An angel must have poked the barrier man because he decided to let us through, told us to hurry and we’d catch up. I think those angels knew if I waited I’d never do it. I heard every claustrophobic person’s worst nightmare as he let us through. ‘Once you decide to go in there’s no coming out this way. You just have to keep going til you’re out the other side and it’s very low in places’. I had a moment of wanting to bolt but then my inner fuck it kicked in and I said to Ady, if I need to get out, no one’s gonna stop me. Come on, let’s go’. Eyebrows raised, he’d never been in a proper cave before, never mind with a kick ass claustrophobic fairy. I think he wondered what he’d let himself in for. He always tells me life’s never dull with me 🤔
Two caves later we emerged exhilarated! We’d done it and it had been lovely. There were moments where they turned all the lights out to give us a taste of what the old miners experienced. I was horrified that tiny holes in the walls were where children crawled in, having to be pulled out by their ankles once their work was done, that’s how small the passage was. I wondered if that had been me in a past life. I even struggle to get into lifts. Once a door closes and I can’t get out I just want to run or claw my way through walls.
We shared a pub meal in the pub that I’d been to with mum so many times before. More importantly it was the setting for my prophetic promise that I’d be with her til her last breath. You’d never think it, going in there. It’s a very pubby pub, but one day she bought homemade bread there and sat by the open fire feeling like I was with her in spirit. She messaged me telling me as much. My phone was off because I was at a reiki share group. I was experiencing a guided meditation where Rita, my teacher at the time, talked us through fields, flowers, colours. All I could see was flames, passion, bread and a key. Love was the key. My passion was for mum, like flames and something in me that swore she wouldn’t walk her path alone. I’d be with her til her last breath. It happened exactly that way. I held her hand years later and watched her very last breath.
As I turned my phone on at the end of the meeting, all those years ago at that reiki share group and saw mums message, we all gasped that I’d literally been with mum in spirit, in that pub as she bought bread by the fire. The pub must have changed hands since then because its now scruffy, playing rock music and not a loaf in sight.
We think of sacred sites as always being this way, but it’s us that make them sacred. The Bible says all of the Earth is holy ground, we just to recognise it as such. Nowhere and no when is ordinary. You’re surrounded by angels constantly if you’ll only wake up.
The cable cars had totally desensitised me to terror and I hoped onto the bus home without a quiver and promptly fell fast asleep.
Day 4 conquered and I wondered what the hell day 5 would bring. For whatever reason love came to day 4 under the guise of adventure. Adventure a soft arsed way of saying you’ll face your mortality in multiple ways. Your life will flash before your eyes and you’ll understand why your mum pee’d herself. You’ll also realise that you’re capable of so much more and grasshopper alley will be waiting when you get home to the shire. I’m still not sure how adventure related to love but I do know that I trusted that each step was a peculiar gift. I think the ticket gifter must still wonder why she picked the quivering couple at the back, god bless her I wasn’t blessing her half way up!