It was misting lightly as we drove into Glastonbury, which only added to the unique mystical atmosphere of the village. Glastonbury has a reputation for leaning toward the unconventional, and as result draws people toward it who lean toward the spiritual and mystic.
The quaint little main shopping district reflects the inhabitant’s attitude toward spirituality and is lined with shops offering charms, bohemian style clothing, sculpture, crystals and books giving direction in subjects ranging from eastern religions, magic spells, potions, and how to the organize of covens.
The art galleries deserve their own mention with an outstanding variety of oils, acrylics, watercolors, multimedia and drawings. Subjects include free flowing abstracts, traditional landscapes of the surrounding countryside, portrayals of spiritual and mystical spirits which inhabit the land. I found a style for every taste in each genre from the sophisticated, to the primitive and price ranges to match.
We had heard that Glastonbury was a one-of-a-kind place in the United Kingdom. We were told it draws like-minded “living-on-the-edge” types of people to it. There were also generalities about “and now we know where they are and it’s a good place for them.”
Perhaps it is my age and the environment of my youth, but it was precisely the throwback to the 60s, which I found most charming and fascinating about Glastonbury and it’s residents. There is a character we found nowhere else in England, reflected in it’s people and their approach and openness to life in general.
To enter the abbey ruins is like walking aback in time. The great walls and entrances, which remain, reminded me of how important the spiritual side of life was in the Middle Ages. Walking through the ruins, I could imagine the monks at their tasks of copying manuscripts, studying, praying and carrying out the daily tasks of monastery life.
Walking down the main street, through the shops and visiting with the locals, I had a glimpse of an alternative approach to daily living in the modern world, which I found refreshing.
Glastonbury was a tremendous way to spend an afternoon. Someday, I would like to go back, if only for another shirt.
PS. Our tour did not include it but I want to mention the Glastonbury Music Festival. Five days of some of the best bands in pop and rock and roll. Typically around 175,000 people attend each year. The festival has been cancelled for 2018, but plans are in the works for 2019. http://us.hellomagazine.com/celebrities/2017062640132/glastonbury-festival-2018-cancelled/
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