I’m sitting here staring at a book about the ‘Wrekin Giant’ wondering when I will finally get around to creating my own version of the Salopian folk tale.
No point sitting here just thinking about it. If I’m not going to get on with it here and now, it’s time to get out. Not out and up the Wrekin, but out and along the flatlands of Chilton. Can I call Chilton flat, when it frames the top of the valley that is Sudbury?
Time to get out there. Time to do the wall-walk and peruse the common folk in my bailey!
Entering Church Field Road, I take in the view of the very new and modern Medical Centre – a controversial development, as the building was originally destined for a site much closer to the town centre of Sudbury. Instead Babergh Council ignored popular opinion, and the people who demanded a service within walking distance for elderly residents, and perched the medical centre on cheaper industrial land up a steep hill – a bus ride away for the townsfolk! Needless to say, the land left in a local man’s will (in Waldingfield Road) for use as a people’s hospital, has now been commandeered for a very lucrative housing development. Democracy is dead. Hardly headline news. Democracy is so dead that the people have given up on even bothering to express an opinion, as demonstrated by Sudbury’s low turnout, for the European Elections, at the Waldingfield Road polling station! If their views mean nothing to Babergh, why will Europe give a jot?
My intention is just to keep on walking along Church Field Road, as far as the old parish church – my little bit of heaven!
But as I pass the Medical Centre, I notice a pathway through an adjacent piece of wasteland. I venture off the pavement and take my chances. Immediately, I become engrossed in my surroundings and out comes the Nokia!
So much for a piece of wasteland. This is a haven of tranquillity!
And on either side, in hedgerow and field, there are treats to be found:
Herein is everything that is worth living for, and everything well worth getting out of the day job for! So much to see outside the four walls of the organised workplace. If this is disorganised chaos and the dossing ground of the slackers amongst us, then I’m all in!
Without a doubt in my mind about the wisdom of my recent decision to go freelance, I snap onwards. Never have a felt so free of angst. Goodbye boss! Hello nature!
And, as I venture further, I find that I’m shielded from the sounds and toxic fumes of the passing heavy duty traffic, by tall hedgerows.
What amazing sights: blue skies, open space and a castle – my castle – lording it over the treetops?
Excited, I fall to my knees, ready to sing praises to all that rises up in splendour to greet me…
It turns out that my new religiosity is fit for purpose. For, indeed, it’s no fairytale palace ahead; I’m walking up a church aisle to attend my second wedding – my marriage to my new self – Jay Cool, international photographer and freelance writer!
It’s a long walk, but well worth the effort, and I step into my new life:
Granted there may well be some doubters amongst you, as I can see why you might think a graveyard setting a little unusual for a new beginning. But, take a look at the lady wearing the skull-and-crossbones t-shirt! Does she look like there’s anything usual about her?
She’s the last and the first of the great gravediggers, so leave her be to toast in a fantasy of her own making! And, look – she’s right at home there! See how her hair is fading to match the rusty tones of the church’s red brick walls.
She’s a chameleon – a monster – so keep your distance …!
Whatever she may be, then she has the powers of a sorceress. See how, as she steps out of the land of the dead, everything she looks at turns into gold:
So powerful is she that even the corrugated iron walls of Chilton’s industrial unit take on a new attractiveness as she passes by on her return journey:
All’s well that ends well. As, I, Jay Cool, step back into my cave home, my powers diminish. My kitchen’s still a mess – seems I’m no threat to anyone!
Mary Poppins! Where are you?
Copyright of text, and photos of Chilton, owned by Jay Cool, May 2019
P.S. Unbelieveably, Chilton Woods is earmarked for a new housing development.