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Feeling Edgy

10 Apr

Some memories of experiences are so ingrained within us, that we can recall them with absolute clarity. These memories seem to pop up at the oddest times, today for instance I am sat at home, keeping out of the sun, fighting with the ever-growing list of book reviews and wondering if I can be bothered to get up and find something to eat when the below recollections came somewhat randomly to my mind.

It’s one of those enigmas of life, that we shall never know quite what triggers off those thoughts of times past, that we instinctively knew were memorable and would be seared onto our memories in the photo album entitled ‘Always’.  One such time for myself was an impromptu trip into Derbyshire of an evening, which ended in the dark, stumbling back to the car, harassed by feral sheep with no torches to hand but that wasn’t the most indelible thought as it so often would be on other occasions.

I recall Lying atop a huge block of stone on Baslow Edge with friends, looking out over the surrounding area in the silence and fast fading light.  We had the whole plateau to ourselves the ramblers having long since left, apart from a cooling breeze and It was hard not to be in awe of such a supremely peaceful moment.  It was perhaps the realisation that this was freedom from work and other such banal thoughts and was the chance to soar in comprehension of the triumph of earthly construction.

We were on a prominence, a solid bed of hard rock, grooved by weather through many epochs. There was a shared silence between a trio of like minded thoughts – a sense of self – and reflections on breathtaking original art, put forth for the pleasure of these thinking creatures by natural processes.  The breeze swirled like as if many voices talking from the past, perhaps it is all in my imagination, a whimsical idea from an overly romantic writer, I’m sure you can all sympathise with this fanciful accord of generations.

Looking out over the little town of Baslow as the sun set, there was a strange sense of the mundane and the timeless. Seeing lights in the houses below us, gradually flickering on with people living their lives oblivious to all our thoughts of the awesome nature surrounding them.   It is enough to make me wonder why we do not have more respect for this Earth, perhaps we are looking out on different worlds.

At times like this it is perhaps what one would call a Perfect Moment, where clarity of the colossal amount of time is calculated and the violence that has crafted the gifts of places we walk leaves us in awe.  Some geological terms have an elegance to them that reflects the structures hewn out by forces both fantastical and relentless, perhaps that is the best way we have to pay homage to what we have.

The boundless dynamism of chaotic harmony, the ultimate artistry and elegance of seismic tidal forces of nature considered. It all made me feel infinitesimal in the grand scale of things, sandwiched between the vast grandeur of space and the prodigious anger, lying at peace for now under my still form.  I find myself lucky to be able to appreciate both from the vantage point I possess at that point in time, a culmination of a perfect plan which I appreciate at this moment more than did then.

There is something about the isolation, the loneliness and the imagination with which any of us can project on the landscape. Perhaps testament to our history as a species but maybe there is something more innate, instinctive and emotional about the places we dwell, almost as if cognisance was reaching out through time to all of us.

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62 Comments

Posted by on 10/04/2015 in My Writings, Travel

 

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62 responses to “Feeling Edgy

  1. passionfortruths

    10/04/2015 at 12:11

    Deep thinking? 😉

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    • Ste J

      10/04/2015 at 12:14

      That’s what I get for sitting on top of a cliff, I wonder how my musings would go if I did a parachute jump.

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  2. Jill Weatherholt

    10/04/2015 at 12:30

    I’ve always loved those “perfect moments.” That photograph is stunning, Ste J. Thanks for sharing the link.

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    • Ste J

      10/04/2015 at 12:34

      If only we were aware that they were on the way then we could really enjoy them then. I suppose observing every moment of our lives is the best way to go about it. The photo is beautiful, the countryside is as well, I should go and take photos myself, which won;t be as good on my phone but there is a lot of beauty around.

      Liked by 1 person

       
  3. leapingtracks

    10/04/2015 at 12:33

    I think your musings would fly straight up past you as your plummeted to earth if you did a parachute jump…. 🙂 Anyway, back to your excellent post, one of the reasons I love living in Scotland is that it is really rather easy to find places of solitude. I try not to take them for granted. Having spent most of my adult life in London, it has been wonderful to get away from such urbanisation to the beauty of the north. Silence; the difference kind of light and smell in the air; the longer days (and shorter ones of course) – it’s all marvellous.

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    • Ste J

      10/04/2015 at 12:40

      I think I would be nervous and then trying to fix it all in my mind to really focus on anything other than ‘this parachute better open!’. With councils selling off all the playing fields and such it is getting harder to find any real peace in towns and cities, I would love to have a view and a bit of quiet, it would certainly help with the writing, I am jealous of you.

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      • leapingtracks

        10/04/2015 at 13:03

        Yes, we are indeed very lucky. Edinburgh is full of views. I had no idea until we came up here – I did not ever realise it was on the coast – doh! But every so often you turn a corner in the city and are met with the most glorious view out towards the Firth of Forth, or up to Arthur’s Seat, or across to the Pentland Hills. And that’s without even making the slightest bit of effort to journey perhaps 15-20 mins to one of our lovely, quiet, sweeping, clean beaches….. I’ll shut up now & go file my application for the Scottish Tourist Board…

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        • Ste J

          10/04/2015 at 13:05

          Whilst you do that, I will go, sulk and compare your views to our wind farms and bits of concrete, lol.

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  4. clarepooley33

    10/04/2015 at 13:53

    Beautifully written! I know that part of the country quite well and experience that unforgettable feeling of euphoria quite often when we have got to the top of a hill and are standing on the edge of one of the outcrops. The views are marvellous with just the sound of the wind and falcons calling as they fly overhead. Your writing makes me want to go back there now!

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    • Ste J

      10/04/2015 at 14:05

      It is a wonderful place with such versatile landscapes. I think you should go there and take photos! I think it is great that you share my thoughts when standing above lovely scenery. Falcons aren’t featured on wordpress blogs at all.

      Liked by 1 person

       
    • clarepooley33

      10/04/2015 at 20:56

      We used to stay at Castleton and enjoyed all the walks and scenery there. We have also stayed near Buxton and near Ashbourne and recently we have been staying near Leek at Blackshaw Moor in Staffordshire. My in-laws live in Manchester and my eldest daughter lives in Sheffield so staying in the Peaks is a good way of seeing them and having a holiday at the same time! I have written a couple of posts about our last holiday there. My love of Bakewell Pudding draws me back just as much as the scenery!

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      • Ste J

        11/04/2015 at 13:16

        Derbyshire is a wonderful place with some fantastic bookshops to compliment the scenery which always makes life richer. It’s great to have such a wonderful place to use as a base for travel and a holiday. I’ve never had a proper Bakewell Tart before, I really need to get out more.

        Liked by 1 person

         
  5. shadowoperator

    10/04/2015 at 14:19

    Beautiful picture, and beautiful, resonant thoughts to go along with it. Truly an example of Wordsworth’s (and Coleridge’s) “emotion recollected in tranquility.”

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    • Ste J

      10/04/2015 at 19:24

      I have only read Coleridge’s Rime of the Ancient mariner, I recommend that with Gothic pictures, or were they etchings or wood cuts, I’m not sure but anyway nature is the true nurture of thought and word, some birds twittering is always pleasant as well.

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  6. readinpleasure

    10/04/2015 at 18:43

    A wonderful experience of poetic magnitude and written as such. 🙂

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    • Ste J

      10/04/2015 at 19:26

      That is a very fine thing you say, thank you. I think my thoughts have gotten better with age, I don’t think I had the words to explain my thoughts back then.

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  7. Christy Birmingham

    10/04/2015 at 18:49

    You have many wonderful musings here. I am often in awe of nature but also in a bit of fear about its power. I am struck as well by the way a single nature scene can change from day to night and by the angle at which you gaze at it, as well as the mood you are in. I can tell you were in a deep mood as you wrote this one. It is very well penned, my friend.

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    • Ste J

      10/04/2015 at 19:42

      The power of the natural processes that must have been generated is awe inspiring. I think it is a wonder that a certain mood, time and place of vision can all be just perfect to start off the musings when if only one of those things was slightly off then I may not have come by such ideas. I sometimes think that I don’t really ever switch off from analysing things, even a cheesy 80’s film has me analysing the plot, having said that if I did switch off then I may get out of the habit and that wouldn’t do!

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  8. gargoylebruce

    10/04/2015 at 23:27

    Feral sheep??! The mind boggles!

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    • Ste J

      11/04/2015 at 13:03

      One had red eyes and we could hear them running around us in the dark, herding us to the edge of the cliff. Forget the zombie apocalypse, it’s the sheep we need to be watching.

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      • gargoylebruce

        12/04/2015 at 07:34

        I’ll keep an eye out. I’ve seen some of your British sheep standing nonchalantly on the side of Welsh mountains. The agile buggers could get in anywhere!

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        • Ste J

          12/04/2015 at 14:47

          Ewe should be keeping an eye on the New Zealand cousins.

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  9. Lyn

    11/04/2015 at 02:30

    That is an awesome picture. Imagine having a picnic up there on that little circle of green grass at the top of the cliff. What a view you would enjoy. LOL maybe even pull out a sleeping bag and enjoy the cool breeze and the night sky – counting the stars as they came out to play.

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    • Ste J

      11/04/2015 at 13:11

      Now that would be fantastic! Having a whole day and night there, just enjoying nature for its own sake. It sounds peaceful, I think I would go for somewhere more remote though, if I can only hear natural sounds then I would be more in the zone.

      Liked by 1 person

       
  10. Seyi sandra

    11/04/2015 at 15:37

    Well written my friend. I think our minds is akin to computers which has stored millions of messages, pictures and unforgettable experiences. I love the way you captured your feelings – we live in a wonderful world. I truly enjoyed reading this Ste J. Hope you’ll get more unique experiences like this one.

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    • Ste J

      11/04/2015 at 17:45

      All the time I spend on my own musing is paying off, which is handy for the blog. Its a truly special and to me surprising thing to not only have the thoughts but to be able to put them into words that can move other people, as long as I don’t get too complacent in my writing that is. The mind is a wonderful enigma, which we tend to forget about as it goes everywhere with us.

      Liked by 1 person

       
      • Seyi sandra

        13/04/2015 at 20:24

        I don’t think you’ll get too complacent on your writing, the trick is to prioritise. Wishing you a great week my friend!

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        • Ste J

          13/04/2015 at 20:48

          I do try and ignore all the everyday mundane stuff as much as possible to give me time to read and write. Life is too short to do the boring stuff when not needed! Have an awesome week yourself my friend.

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  11. Jeff

    11/04/2015 at 21:39

    Love this (description in human terms of glacial landscape?):

    ‘the violence that has crafted the gifts of places we walk’

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    • Ste J

      12/04/2015 at 15:39

      There is something rousing about the events of long ago, the power that has gone into creating valleys and cutting deep into stone that is just awesome, it never fails to impress me. If I would have been near some mountains when writing this post, it would have gone on for three posts at least.

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  12. Bumba

    12/04/2015 at 02:41

    A fine moment recorded for us! It is interesting that perception of Nature’s grandeur and our own relative insignificance in the grand scheme of things does not diminish us. Rather the opposite. We feel larger, fuller.

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    • Ste J

      12/04/2015 at 14:57

      That we can recognise it and quantify it, each with a unique perspective on it is an impressive thing in the grand scheme of things. To recognise a moment such as this is to look into the eye of the universe as an equal, or so I feel. Blimey I sound pretentious saying, tone that last bit down and I’ll stand by the sentiments.

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  13. renxkyoko

    12/04/2015 at 05:51

    O_O

    Speechless.

    You certainly have a way with words, SteJ. Wow !

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    • Ste J

      12/04/2015 at 14:51

      If it were not for my wonderful readers then I probably wouldn’t have learnt to craft the words I have, so stand up and take a bow my friend!

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  14. Maniparna Sengupta Majumder

    12/04/2015 at 13:13

    Such magnetic moments of isolation and introspection, I think, are very much needed. I loved the phrase ‘shared silence’…it, however, produces a sense of great friendship shared among like-minded people…

    The photograph is amazingly beautiful!

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    • Ste J

      12/04/2015 at 15:14

      everybody seems to live on top of each other these days so getting away from things and being free in the open world is a great thing. I think other people sharing in my thoughts was better than keeping them to myself at the time and to now have the tools to be able to tell the wider world makes me a happy writer (when normally I’m so picky and critical).

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  15. Theanne aka magnoliamoonpie

    12/04/2015 at 15:24

    Profound…I have such moments on the odd occasion…rather thrilling isn’t it?

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    • Ste J

      12/04/2015 at 15:37

      It is like seeing the world properly for once. Whilst we about it what is this obsession with steel and glass that architects seem to be enamoured with these days, a natural look would compliment our surroundings so much more.

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  16. Andrea Stephenson

    12/04/2015 at 23:45

    I loved your description of the perfect moment – the combination of the landscape and the lights going on below, it’s always in nature that I have those perfect moments.

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    • Ste J

      13/04/2015 at 20:45

      I think it must be something ingrained and instinctual that is passed down to us, the respect we have in those perfect moments which gets lost within all the day to day things we do in our concrete jungles. It is wonderful to have that insight, it feels like a privilege.

      Liked by 1 person

       
  17. quirkybooks

    14/04/2015 at 00:28

    Hi Ste, I have an uncle that still live in Derbyshire – Although I haven’t seen them for years! I think it’s great that you love nature so much. Being the quirky, controversial girl I am, I don’t love nature as much as some others may do. I used to live out in the countryside for years and it’s really not my thing. I don’t like a lot of empty space, not even in my own home, I like cosy and things to wrap around me. I feel freaked out and strange by looking out across too much countryside, it doesn’t sit so well with me. I am quite happy living in a city – I am happy with some commercialism and I love to go out to cinema, zoos, aquariums, theme parks – which can be out in more countryside, I like doing. I like hustle and bustle and feel most relaxed and happy in that environment – Not the countryside. I feel chilled out on the London Tubes. London is totally my vibe and at one with me – So happy there! Not sure I would like to live there, but to visit is so good for my soul. I like the Quayside near where I live, it’s lovely – And that is the closest to nature I usually get.

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    • Ste J

      14/04/2015 at 10:26

      Chilled on the Tube, that is the first time I have ever heard that, I salute you! Perhaps because you lived in the countryside for so long it doesn’t have the same effect as it does for us who live in suburban areas and vice versa for you. It’s good that you are opposite to a lot of people, it keeps the day interesting to have variety in one’s friends.

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      • quirkybooks

        15/04/2015 at 03:46

        Awww Ste, that’s a very lovely way of speaking about my Quirkiness, thanks. I have to say, it keeps my life interesting too. I never get bored of myself.

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  18. RoSy

    14/04/2015 at 03:39

    I should have kept out of the sun yesterday. Well – I thought that I did. It was brisk & mostly cloudy. Instead I came home after 8 games of lacrosse (both of my daughters played 4 games each yesterday) looking like half a lobster. My nose RED! I look like a clown! On the bright side – red is my favorite color. 😉

    So nice that you got to hang out with your thoughts. Always a nice chill time – eh?

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    • Ste J

      14/04/2015 at 09:59

      It has been years since I went to that place and a long time since I thought of it. It is strange how these long dormant thoughts and feelings came back with so much clarity, perhaps they have matured over time.

      I can imagine you going out all normal and coming back looking as red as a lobster with big claws, that would be awesome…although a challenge to pick up your cup of tea.

      Liked by 1 person

       
  19. Sherri

    14/04/2015 at 16:02

    Ahh, those perfect moments of calm, relishing it with good friends, feeling that cooling breeze and relishing the silence and the isolation as you look around, above and below. We remember such moments so well probably because they are so rare. I had to laugh at the feral sheep! A beautiful and lyrical post this Ste, you are quite the romantic at heart I dare say…

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    • Ste J

      14/04/2015 at 20:19

      I do allow my romantic side to show every so often, just in case you think I am just a macho superhero sort of bloke. I would hate to be typecast! Those satanic sheep eyes will always stay with me but yes that peaceful, perfect time will always stay with me as such good memories do. Perhaps another good memory will come to me soon with which I can impart you.

      Liked by 1 person

       
      • Sherri

        15/04/2015 at 14:51

        I look forward to that very much…and these all help with ridding yourself of the memory of those satanic sheep eyes…

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  20. angela

    17/04/2015 at 03:36

    This is a lovely piece of reflection and writing– you’ve brilliantly captured that moment when place/time dance with the muse and the imaginative eye opens – how I do wish this were mine. Bless you for recording your thoughts and sharing with us ~

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    • Ste J

      17/04/2015 at 11:14

      ‘When place/time dance with the muse’, I think that is a wonderful line, t the crafting of a post is so much like that and I will think of it like that when I write other such posts of which I hope there will be a few more in time.

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  21. writersideup

    17/04/2015 at 05:09

    I love the way you conveyed these thoughts, Ste J. It really is a wonderful thing, to be exposed to something that makes it impossible to not go deep into thought like this 🙂 And this photo is absolutely breathtaking. Is it a picture of Baslow? John Grant’s photos are stunning! I didn’t see this one on his site, though, unless my eyes just skipped over it.

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    • Ste J

      17/04/2015 at 11:10

      It’s a photo taken from the heights above it, I was further around to the left of the photo and looking down on the town. The drop was more sheer there, leading to much drama of going close to the edge and looking over. James grant is a cracking photographer, the photo is on the site but it is in the blog section.

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      • writersideup

        17/04/2015 at 16:25

        I can tell you, you wouldn’t catch ME getting close to that edge! lol

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        • Ste J

          17/04/2015 at 20:22

          I made sure I was lying flat to spread my weight and only got everything about the nose over the side. I’m not into too much danger.

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          • writersideup

            17/04/2015 at 21:19

            OK, THAT doesn’t sound too bad. You couldn’t fall over that way 😀

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  22. LuAnn

    21/04/2015 at 17:21

    Well hello there old friend. I have had to give myself permission to lie low recently as I addressed some niggling health issues but I’m back! Now to catch up on what is happening in your world. This was the perfect post to choose to begin venturing back into your life. After reading this, you have described in such an eloquent manner how I feel when standing on a mountaintop after a challenging hike, surveying the undulating landscape. Perhaps I could get you to write some guest posts for me? 😉 Brilliant!

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    • Ste J

      22/04/2015 at 10:13

      I have missed you but it’s great to have you back in good condition and as awesome as always. I do thinking that at the time I first thought those thoughts I had no idea that they would resonate with somebody many miles and years away in the future. I would be honoured to write some guest posts for you, I like the challenge of keeping up the writing standard of your blog. I think I need to wander around more as well to stimulate my thoughts.

      Liked by 1 person

       
      • LuAnn

        22/04/2015 at 17:49

        I am going to think about how this might work out. I will keep you posted.

        Like

         

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