Tuesday, 19 July 2016

Delta party

Yesterday was too hot to do much, apart from walking into town for exercise in the afternoon. The beaches were crowded, and I took some photos of two lads practising tightrope walking on the edge of the beach. I sat in the shade to listen outside the Vinaros Escuela de la Musica. Inside a band rehearsal was taking place, definitely a beginners band. The two young lads were learning by doing, and that captured all my attention.

This morning, another visit to L'Ampolla Pitch and Putt club house for Robert and Gerda's party, a combined celebration of 65 years of marriage and Robert's 94th birthday. About twenty people were there to congratulate them, family, neighbours, church members. A buffet lunch was provided, with a wonderful array of cakes to follow. It was such a happy occasion, with a much loved couple. I felt privileged to be there with them, and asked to pray a blessing on the gathering.

At the end of the party, I had a couple of hours free. The club house is near one of the peripheral villages of the Delta de lEbre, so it was simply a matter of heading east through rice fields to reach the north facing sea shore, opposite L'Ampolla across the bay. The geographical configuration of the Delta is a complex testimony to the interplay of river, ocean, weather and terrain over millennia, so there more to explore than is at first obvious.

I ended up at the Restaurant Vascos, which sits at the conjunction of two beaches. Here, there are miles of open sand, and right behind a thin line of dunes are vast acres of rice paddies. I took only a few photos. In the heat of the day, there weren't too many birds around, only biting insects, so I paid a price for my little expedition.

Then I drove inland to El Perello and visited John again in his residencia. We talked about T S Eliot's poetry. He's running a poetry discussion group, and was puzzling over a particular image of a white horse, and wondering if there might be a biblical cross reference. I could only think of one in the Revelation to John, and as it turned out, when I checked, there are two. Both are symbols of the conqueror's status. In Revelation 6 it refers to the Antichrist and in chapter 19 refers to the ultimate victory of Christ. If I ever knew that consciously, it's not information I've ever had to use before. That's the marvellous thing about scripture. It contains so much, but not all of it has relevance and connects with one's experience at the same time.

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