Looking at Longleat
Friday, 8th May 2009

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Virginia's been watching these programmes on the TV about Longleat, which major on the Safari park with the fun-loving animals like lions and tigers. So we duly set off for a long weekend for our personal encounter with nature. The trip didn't start very brightly - rain was pelting down as we drove down towards the M25 round London. But happily blue patches started jostling with the dark clouds, and we got some sun and sharp shadows as we voyaged westwards.

Our trip out took in Stonehenge. It was overcast, and drizzling, when we went round the prehistoric building site. Couldn't go up close to and inbetween the stones as was possible on my last visit - but that was some time ago. The fencing off makes it a less intense experience. Black crows haunted the sarsens - perhaps the resident spirits whose utterances are now just caws and cries to us. The gift shop had books with various explanations of Stonehenge. A conflict between those wanting these stones to be mysterious, and those wanting to have answers for them. Perhaps the main importance of Stonehenge was and remains as somewhere that draws people together, a focus for a community, a symbol of unity.