After an amazing night sleep I’m up and down to the refectory for Frühstuck! No embarrassing lingual lapses occur – it is buffet, ( that’s in French -my 4th language – last spoken at Char and Michel’s wedding, but still in there, mixed with the Spanish and German and Italian.) There is also kiwifruit, and cute little cinnamon pinwheels (nearly as good as niece Lucy’s) and coffee.
Those birds certainly started early this morning and I take a walk around the ‘park’ as they call it or garden as we would, and sit and contemplate. Also I visit the church, no service on a Saturday but they are preparing the flowers and decorations and so are happy to let me in for a quick perusal. Pretty plain, but a side door to the cloister/hotel for the early morning prayer sessions (or quick access to the hotel showers if they go with the yoga option!)
I sit in the sun in my room and contemplate – as you are supposed to do on retreat – and then when I can stand that anymore I go for a walk into town and have lunch, buy a few snacks and walk home.
The walk start off through forest and past a very sad cemetary with thousands of the same tomb from military deaths from 1918; again it is exactly 100 years ago, they were in a hell of a situation and some of them were only 19. It is hilly and surrounded by trees, I honour the courage and duty but move quickly on, it is too sad there. After that I walk through more suburban streets with big but slightly overgrown houses. I guess that these are holiday houses for city people and some have the gardeners in getting them ready for summer occupation. Interesting to look at other peoples’ back-yards and lives.
After my return I spend a bit of time in the loft library with my technology, I’m feeling pretty chilled out, the good vibes of the monastery must be working on me. It is a good feeling to know that there are not hundreds of sights and activities you should be going out to see. It’s just you and nature here.
I have booked a massage for tomorrow. What was I thinking – I don’t even like massage, however it is on at the same time as church service, so I may miss that. I just want to see who goes, not to actually sit through it unless it has Architecture with a capital A.
It’s at 10am Sunday morning and I guess that this is still a local church for the community, adjacent to, but not part of the hotel.
On Sunday morning Zsuzsanna tells me via email that is is National Children day and that explains the very dressed up citizens large and small. The church was being decorated for that and not a wedding. Outside (with me) were the fathers and grandfather with the ‘little ones” and some who had no excuse, standing around. The little boys in shirts not tucked in and dress pants but drawing the line at dress shoes, the little girls in tulle and sparkly shoes.