Yesterday, I left the staycation village to pay my respects. I travelled 35 miles to Dumbleton, a smaller village of around 600 inhabitants which predates the Domesday Book. More specifically, I went to visit St Peter’s churchyard and the graves of Joan and Patrick Leigh Fermor – buried side-by-side. Their companionship, post-mortem, I find comforting. The best part (for me) of the fabric of St Peter’s Church, was the north door, its design incorporating a startled-looking, disgorging Green Man. I just like it – it’s quirky. Inside, I was struck by the chapter from Exodus on the wall in the nave, and the brightly-painted 17th-century monument to Sir Charles Percy and his wife Dorothy Cocks by the altar.
As I left, I admired Joan and Patrick being taken back into this timeless landscape, absorbed by its constancy, and was gently reminded I’m only passing through.