August the 9th was the anniversary of the birth of the famous poet and playwright John Dryden, born in the village of Aldwincle Northamptonshire in 1631.
He wrote the poem "Happy Man"
Happy the man, and happy he alone,
He who can call today his own:
He who, secure within, can say,
Tomorrow do thy worst, for I have lived today.
Be fair or foul or rain or shine
The joys I have possessed, in spite of fate, are mine.
Not heaven itself upon the past has power,
But what has been, has been, and I have had my hour.
And reading this its relevance for us today is obvious, how many of us have thought "If only I had the time to do this or that" as we rush around in a vain attempt to keep up with the demands places on us.
The last line "But what has been, has been, and I have had my hour." resonates with me because lately I have been drawn to the conclusion that all our lives really consist of is our experiences. Forget all the stuff we strive to own that will eventually disappear and become meaningless,
The things we see, people we meet, friendships, places that we go to, everything that makes up the fabric of our lives, these are the really important things.
Mostly because a friend of mine has been told they have limited time to live and it bought me round to thinking what I would do in the same position.
My friend and me it turns out have vastly different thoughts on this as my position is do everything you can and have great experiences for whatever time remains to you, I won't dwell too much on this as it may seem depressing but reading the poem only convinced me of the sense my own position,
However that may sound arrogant and I know it is an easy thing for me to say as I myself am not in the same boat as my friend, and who knows how I would actually deal with a situation like that. ?
Anyway last weekend I took a drive out to Aldwincle and stopped at the Church in the village and took a few pictures.
I travelled on from Aldwincle to Fotheringhay, a village with vast amounts of history which I encourage you to research yourselves, whilst there I took more pictures of the Church in the village which is in the process of some restoration work, so the pictures are not the best.