I can’t imagine the changes this ancient tree has witnessed over its 2400 years. Sometimes we need to step out of our normal everyday life and visit something awe-inspiring. We give up our seniority and become humble. This was the oldest yew tree in England and it was so vibrant! It had fresh new leaves and looked so healthy. It’s girth was huge, it was such an old being but had the sparkle of a young child. I hope we all have that sparkle in our old age.
Ancient trees have been moved. In 1880 an ancient yew with a girth exceeding 6 metres, was moved in a church yard in Buckland, Kent. St Andrew’s church steeple had been damaged by lightening and they decided they wanted to extend the church, so the tree was carefully dug up and moved. The first set of chains broke under the strain of 55 tons. Stronger chains had to be sought and it took 2 days to move the ancient tree. Spectators were allowed to watch for a fee, this helped to pay for the work along with income from reporting and publicity. Despite the cynics, the tree stands testimony as it survives to today. What may look impossible to one person is possible to another. We all need to be aware of the limitations we put on ourselves, because of the way we see the world.
We also went to meet the greatest maiden oak (that’s unpollarded). In 1994 it had a girth of 12 meters and a height of 20 metres (you can see it in the picture). It was such a majestic tree. It was the perfect time to meet it as it’s new little leaves of bright acid green were coming out, showing life and vibrancy in such an old body. Being near such a big tree is very calming and reassuring. It was a five and half hour drive down to Kent to meet this 1000year old oak and it was worth it. This tree had such a beautiful presence, it felt like meeting a loving old grandparent.
Whatever interests you, plan a mini-adventure. Just go and do it, with a friend or on your own. You can find local accommodation, we stayed at Canterbury Youth Hostel. Hostels are great places to meet other travellers. You can easily start up a conversation in the kitchens and social spaces. We slept in a cabin outside, (a modern hobbit house) which was fun in itself. Get more fun in your life and go on a mini-adventure!