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.