Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: cistercian way, penrhys, photography, photos, pilgrimage, the cistercian way, wales, walking
Maddy and I caught the bus to Pontypridd, accompanied by Pilgrim Nell the springer spaniel. At least I walked all the way from the edge of Abergavenny round to Penrhys. I had walked this final leg just over a year before as part of a large group pilgrimage; it was good to do it more quietly.
Climbing up on old roads, woods and fields, hills. Finding our way past windfarms (I am now always led to reflect on the similarities and differences between these and those of La Mancha). Good fencing and stiles meaning passing a slippery, muddy dog across. Ynysybwl, Buarth Capel, Nant Ffrwd, Mynachdy. Arriving in good time for lunch at Llanwynno. We climbed down to St Gwynno’s Well, very overgrown, but worth finding (much easier if you have a spaniel with you). Another of those saints no one knows anything about. I love this – a very definite reason for devotion. I have an icon in my Study of two adult and one child saints. I have no idea who they are; this seems of utter importance.
And then to the pub (Llanwynno has not much more than a well, a Church and a pub in a clearing in the forest. Perfect.
Over the course of an hour, cheese sandwiches and a pint or two, a wonderful thing happened. Almost everyone who had been involved in supporting me on the pilgrimage arrived.
Together we climbed up over the tops, down to Tylorstown and then up the steep climb to Penrhys. A visit to the well and then the Church for prayers, tea and cake. And for me, hospitality for the night. More on Penrhys tomorrow …
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