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Cream Tea Quest…

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Supporting Josie in her quest to ‘not do an Ironman’ is proving to be a very serious endurance experience for Jane and I… So far we have completed day two of our ‘cream tea eating challenge’, and we have returned home proud of the achievement, if not a little exhausted from the effort…!

Yesterday we took our tea in Croyde Bay… Today we ventured further along the coast to Saunton Sands…  We thought of Andrew who is our friend, and a member of our triad, the ‘Gold and silver’ writing group. We formed about twelve years ago – or maybe more – and for some years we met once a week to share our writing… It was a very special period of time.. In truth you might be forgiven for mistaking our writing group for three friends meeting up for a very animated and chatty lunch…

Andrew loves to surf and Saunton Sands is one of his favourite places… So today we enjoyed looking out over the wild rainy wet sands, from indoors while we ate our tea, imagining him zooming in on the waves…

There are places on the planet where many of us have trod, we have run along the beaches, surfed in the waves, shared experiences whether together or at different times… And we are linked by the memories, the love of the sea and the sand, the sound of the squawking gulls and the delight of biting into a scone, thick with clotted cream and jam…

We holidayed in Devon and Cornwall as a family, and my Mother’s love of a cream tea was a complete mystery to me… I wanted to be racing about and swimming; boring old cream teas…!

And so she and my father would leave Rosy and I in the pool at the hotel we were staying in, and drive off – just as Jane and I did today – in search of the perfect cream tea experience…

So now I understand… 🙂 And although my mother has been gone for many many years, I smile at her presence, as I sit enjoying the thing she loved – and so she lives on, within the enjoyment of a cream tea…

The energy of those who have passed, lives on in our memories of them… The play of illusion, of no time separating us; the play of life and death, means that over forty years on, I can sit with Jane over a cream tea and laugh and enjoy, and my mother is there too, because now I can embrace and share her love, her enjoyment… There is no separation, no time…

By being fully in the here and now, the memories cease to hold us back, or to keep us sad or stuck… Instead they can fill us with life, laughter, the joy of love and connection…

We did start the day in energetic fashion…  The three of us went for an early run on a very blowy Woolacombe beach… The sand whipped across the vast sandy acres, empty except for one lone soul… A few more runners appeared as we ran, and two horses danced in circles… Wild grey cloudy beach beauty, and as we ran back along our morning playground the wind pushed us to run faster and faster and faster, and Anadi and I raced barefoot across the expanse towards the tiny image of Jane sitting on the rocks,…

A joyous start to a joyous day….

 

 

I have been running all of my life – it feels I was born to run. In the running step I experienced freedom and my true expression. I came to see that I needed to ‘get out of the way of myself’ and let my energy flow through the running step; allow it to express itself in the dance and the motion of running. I ran for England and GB for some years. My first international was in 1979, a three mile cross country race; and I continued to run at international level until 1993. Two of my best results were first place in the Dublin City Marathon in 1985 and 7th place woman, 3rd British woman in the 1986 London Marathon in a time of 2.36.31, which gained me selection for the Commonwealth Games.

As a little girl I ran barefoot for many years, and then I put on shoes to race around the world. Fifty years later I am travelling the world as a nomad with my husband Anadi and I have taken off my shoes and I am running barefoot again….

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Email : juliachitaylor@gmail.com

 

 

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