24 August 2019

Bleaching the Mind in Powys

Brain Cleaner





I was in Orkney, as one is, and I thought I had met my match, in, Skull Splitter,


One of our strongest beers, named after Thorfinn Einarsson the 7th Viking Earl of Orkney


A rich fruity wine-like complexity on the palate includes fresh and dried fruits, warm exotic spice and light summer citrus fruits. Sophisticated, satiny smooth with a deceptively light character.


ABV.  8.5

HOPS.  East Kent Goldings

MALT.  Maris Otter: Crystal: Chocolate: malted Wheat. 



But, this is another occasion, and after a very long, wet, congested and disrupted drive from Bristol on a Friday evening, I reach The Tanners Arms at Defynnog, in mid-Wales, and..... I find myself with a bottle of Brecon Mind Bleach at 10% abv.







Which is sort of what I came for.  Something to wipe the smeared and claggy brain.  Something to wash away the fusions and cons of daily angst.

I've met big beers before - the great Trappist beers of Belgium for example - but this was something else.  A baseball bat of a brew; a leaded sap with no regard for nicety.








I will not delude.  I finished not the bottle.  I had not driven through a foul Friday evening with its upturned cars and unhurried ambulances to wake up like an inverted beetle, incapable of useful movement.  So I left the residue of my mind bleach to the 4x4 sheep rustlers at the bar and settled to slumber in my single room upstairs, dreaming of nothing at all.....








And as the sun rose over the spangled grasses around me I arose with a clear head, refreshed by local harpic, devoid of responsibility, and, after a very decent breakfast, I moved on.....








And to Talgarth I ventured, between the Brecon Beacons and the Black Hills, between the Wye and the Usk, a pretty, sleepy town, where little happened since yesterday and tomorrow is a frightening concept....








Do not misread me.  I shun not the company of fellows, but there are times, for better, for worse, when it is necessary to ingest a length of gauze and to filter the traces of worldly preoccupations that, like microbial infection, damage appreciation of life....







And so it is good to have moments of peace, and an open mind, and views across the face of the world that are not contaminated by the impurities of politics nor the pressures of the press....









What is this life if, full of care,

We have no time to stand and stare.








I leave the town, and walk up through fields, speaking kindly to sheep and cows, crossing streams, respecting trees, up and up to the ruins of Dinas Castle, ancient in origin, but wasted now, looking north to the Wye and south to the Usk.  








I meet no one - I do see others about their walking - but in ten miles of perambulation I am greeted by no other human.








Way below are some that have been before and now sleep deep beside the chapel door,








And silently above are the few who dare to glide superbly in the azure.....









Though they hold not a feather to the magnificent Buzzards who mew their young into unwanted maturity as time creeps towards the darker months.....









I walk on.  My sermon on the undesirability of ticks mesmerising my flock.....









And I stumble on, the soft air a delight, the fresh grass a welcome change from rucked carpet.  It is good to roam, and good to be alone.....  for a time......







Though the carefully managed hedges and fields below do not really speak of nature.....







It is more the shapes of the hills that holds some sense of history.....

Though the ever changing shape shifting of the clouds reminds me of impermanence.....








Nothing will come of nothing.....



Back in Talgarth a young girl delights in her relationship with her dog,








But she completely ignores me.

So I turn my attention to the history of tractors.....









A poor life this if, full of care,

We have no time to stand and stare.


W H Davies










Time for another bottle of Mind Bleach......

Before the real world comes around.....

xxxx





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