“There is nothing like looking, if you want to find something.
You certainly usually find something,
if you look,
but it is not always
quite the something you were after.”
J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit
Whether setting foot outside your door or picking up a book, adventures are the spice of life. After one amazing adventure that was our 18 month mission to Athens, for a short while, I was unsure where to look or where to tred for an adventure. But those moments were soon gone as I became enthralled in the past, a past that began very close to our temporary home in Steeple, Essex. (!917)
Steeple is a small village on the south side of the river Blackwater. It has 2 pubs, one church and a caravan park, which is where we had our retreat.
I love this part of England with it's tidal river, water fowl that come and go with the seasons, the peace, the skyscapes, sunsets and the history.
In 991 the Viking Olaf sailed up the river and defeated Byrhtnoth and in 61 AD Boudica defeated the Roman legions at Colchester, but neither of these historical events is where I begin my adventure.
A few miles from Steeple is the town of Bradwell-on-Sea, most famous for one of Englands first nuclear power stations. But a far more ancient structure still stands there, one built with the raw materials the Roman's left behind. It is the oldest church in England, St Peter's on the Wall. I have often visited this remote place of worship, way of the beaten track on the North Sea coast and surrounded by farmlands. But it is not the building itself that has launched my adventure, but rather the man who built it, his name, Saint Cedd.