A Rural Idyll: Tuesday March 8th 2011 – A Random Meeting

Two Men Talking on the Footpath

I was at the Priory stone, waiting for the light to go, when I noticed a man walking towards me on the footpath. We got chatting and he told me that the walker just ahead of him on the path had just spoken to him about the reasons people have for moving to the country – the man had felt a sort of liberation and a freedom from past events and felt that most people had deep psychological reasons for leaving the city.  He said that he himself had come to Suffolk more then twenty years previously but it was a “long story”. He said he always stopped on the hill above the priory and felt strangely happy there.  He thought that in some way this was connected to his surname, Preston, which is derived from the Anglo-Saxon for priest.

I found it very interesting that a random meeting in the middle of a field should immediately touch on the ideas I was thinking about, the relationship between the landscape and memory, loss, time passing.  Where do the boundaries lie between the inner and outer worlds?  And the landscape itself being a repository for emotions and memories.  The outline of the Priory appearing suddenly in the grass that hot summer could be used as a metaphor for some of this.

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