Sunday, October 11, 2009

Of Gastropods and Spirituality . . .

Just a few pieces down, at the end of September, some photos were posted from the small town of Rue near the bay of the Somme River. From that excursion the other day, the church in Rue had some interesting details . . . This first one particularly caught my eye because thanks to Mrs Slug, who presents The Adventures of Mr Slug and Friends, my perspective on mollusks, and especially gastropods, has totally changed. I smile now when I see slugs and snails about, even if I know that in their wicked hearts they are dreaming of eating our lettuce. But they can't help that, it is in their nature. And if you read a few of Mrs Slug's back posts, you will see what lovable, adorable invertebrates they really can be. For some reason la Grenouille giggled when she saw this medieval carving of a snail . . . (hmm, I could go for some snails in hot butter and garlic sauce with toasted baguette to soak up the sauce with . . .)
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There were a number of visitors in the church that afternoon, but it would appear that they had all made the mistake of looking directly at Medusa . . .
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This stately woman was holding up a headless (or as the Saj would say : 'eadless), armless baby for all the world to see . . .
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I rather suspect that it was this guilty looking fellow who made off with the baby's head, he's got it in his hands . . .
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A passerby was appalled by all these awful deeds going on . . .
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While a quiet conversation was taking place in the soft filtered light coming in through stained glass . . .
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25 comments:

amatamari© said...

A magnificent photographic series: I really like the atmosphere, the light of the photographs, the image of
Lady ...

Great job!

Silke said...

Oh, I love it! What great photos and story!! I miss the old churches... Hugs, Silke

English Rider said...

"Phallic", was my thought on your first picture. I'll probably be dodging lightning bolts for the rest of the week.
The other carvings are so gently worn, making that which is cold look warm.

Patricia said...

The second photo just knocked me out!

magnoliaamber said...

They queitly chatted when we are not around...I like the last photos best!

Thanks you Mr. and Mrs. Slug again now I remember to follow the blog.

You should smile indeed:) Slugs are the humblest (and the slowest)..

louciao said...

And it stoned me to my soul
Stoned me just like Jelly Roll
Stoned me just like goin' home
And it stoned me

Jimmy Bastard said...

Superb in every detail. The photies are of particular interest to me. I live in a converted chapel, complete with stained glass windows and carved statues, deep within the West coast of Scotland.

I shall continue to wander slowly through such a fine blog at my leisure.

Steve said...

Yes that slug is rather phallic... I'm not sure I shall be able to eat escargot ever again...!

jeff said...

Hi Owen ! T'as vu... je parle anglais ! ! !
Ta dernière photo est fantastique ! J'adore ce contre-jour qui suggère de la vie à ces deux "personnages" ! Cet enfant et cette Madone sont superbes ! Une belle image de paix et de sérénité, de douceur dans un monde de brutes...
J'aime aussi tes statues, mais il faut les chatouiller où pour qu'elles rigolent ? ! ? Non... je plaisante of course !
En tout cas, ton image de paix représentée par cette photo est un réel bonheur pour amorcer cette journée...
Au fait ! ça va mieux ?... J'ai eu comme l'impression que tu prenais de la distance avec ton blog ! ! ! Ne nous fait pas une crise de coeur comme le dit Margaret ! ! !

Toute la paix du monde cher Owen !
Bon et excellent dimanche amigo !
N'abuse pas trop de la tise ( en fait, je me le dis pour moi aussi... )
Amitiés, amour et... Peace and love !

Ciao bello !...;-)

Dedene said...

Great pictures! Can you imagine what on earth was in the minds of those artists?

I'm for eating escargots too. Yum!

French Fancy said...

What fabulous photos, Owen. I bet you've got a real McCoy camera - none of the point and click micro style ones for you.

(I've never eaten snails)

La Framéricaine said...

Owen,

Le F knows that church, has visited it, and is familiar with the stone carving there. He and his first wife used to pass by there on the way to their annual vacations near the beach at Fort Mahon. I particularly like the detail that you captured of l'escargot et la grape de raisin.

Amitiés,

Karen said...

Wonderful. I like the child being held up in front of the stained glass window best, but the others are delightful as well.

I adore your blog.

J said...

I bet they're still all gossipping about your visit!

karine said...

wonderfull pictures owen
kisses
XXX

The Sagittarian said...

You know, you have turned this into something great. A lot of people would probably go "Oooh, lovely old church" and move on to the next thing (like lunch) but you have created such a fine collection of pix and prose I feel like I went there too! (And by the way, dear, we in the Antipodees DO pronounce our 'aitches', a small point I know. But I'm funny that way.) ;-)

AmyR said...

Mmm, snails with butter and garlic!

The church looks like a magnificent, slightly creepy, and beautiful place all rolled into one. Those statues have got to have some interesting stories.

Really lovely photos and narrative.

robert said...

Time seems to be able to tell so much. Reflecting the much work, pain and hope the sculpture invested into his art - one might fear to compare it to today.
Much time for sure went into the photography, which demands once again 'Chapeau !'.
A wonderful time througout this new week for you !

Owen said...

Amatamari, many thanks for dropping in from Rome, if you enjoyed these, then I am happy...

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Silke, when hugs come from afar, then I am doubly happy... Although I'm not religious in the sense of organized religions, I love going into old churches, where often the finest architects and stonecarvers were employee hundreds of years ago...

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Dear ER, that may be why the Grenouille giggled, I cannot say... keep your eye peeled for thunderbolts ! It was beautiful warm stone here...

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Hi Patricia, hope you've come around now ! An aspirin may help...
:-D (Thanks so much !)

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Hi Magnolia Amber, glad you enjoyed visiting Mr & Mrs Slug, they are something else again...

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Dearest Louciao, and everyone must get stoned ! These folks certainly did...

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Hello Jimmy, and welcome, I must thank English Rider for the tip to come over and see your place. And I suggested back to her that you must enjoy dining on haggis while reading Service. Thanks so much for dropping in. Your converted chapel sounds marvellous, I will have to peruse your back posts further to see if you've already posted some pictures of it, the stained glass and sculptures... would love to see all that. Cheers !

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Oh Steve, I hope I haven't put you off escargot ! The ones in restaurants are generally much smaller...
:-D

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Salut Jeff, ah, ce monde de brutes comme tu dis... bon, si je t'ai filé un petit moment de paix, donc, c'est une bonne chose... et non, ce n'est pas du tout que je prends du distance avec le blogosphere, simplement la vie est un peu chargé ces jours-ci, entre le boulot dingot, la corres australienne à la maison, l'anniversaire de la Grenouille, des soucis de voiture que finalement on va changer carrément car en a marre des soucis de voiture, bref, je te raconte pas... c'est marrant, parfois la vie pleut des cordes qui viennent embobiner nos pieds, et autant que l'on essaie d'avancer, boom, on tombe sur le nez... mais bon, cela va s'arranger... on va faire un coup de peinture à la K'line pour se regayer (c'est un mot, ça ???!)
Ciao-go-ami (amigo en verlan...)

Owen said...

Dedene, salut ! Some escargot would go just great with pumpkin soup and fig pie for dessert !!! That all looked so scrumptious, I'm still thinking about it...

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FF, my goodness, you've lived how many years in France, and never eaten snails ? And what about frogs' legs ? Well, not sure just where the line is drawn versus a "real McCoy" camera, and an only partially real McCoy... I don't have the camera(s) of my dreams, but I do the best I can with what I've got... which is good advice I guess in many domains of life...

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Dear Framé,
I am so thrilled that Mr F. knows this place, I hope the photos brought back some good memories for him... the stone work here was incredible. The ceilings in this place reminded me of King's College Chapel in Cambridge, they were that good... we went in to Fort Mahon while we were up that way, the beaches are vast... will post a photo or two soon of beachscape from up that way... and many good returns of the day to you both...

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Hi Karen, you are so kind ! I hope you are having simply the vacation of your dreams... weather was a bit overcast today, good museum day perhaps ?

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J, I'm sure they're a right bunch of chatterboxes when the church shuts its doors for the night... and they probably put on loud music and dance too !

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Karine, a thousand shining thank you's... your blog is beautiful... just your header photo is a work of art, let alone the rest...

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Dearest Amanda, well, what I like to do is go look very carefully at the churches and anything else of interest, taking plenty of pictures, and then, and only then, go have a good long lunch with plenty of snails and moules and frites and whatever to wash it all down with... And oh dear, so the haitches are properly aspirated and otherwise pronounced in the antipodes ??? Then by all means I shall stop implying otherwise, it was just a 'armless, ooooppps, harmless 'abit I was getting into, errrr, habit ! Let's have a drink and discuss the merits of "H"s one day... and oh boy, it's almost Tuesday !!!

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Hi Amy ! Indeed, some details are a little creepy, but then they hark back to a time when many people couldn't read, and images were the most powerful form of communication for the masses...

It would be a pleasure to sit down for a plate of snails in garlic & butter... now that I think of it, haven't had any for a while, will have to rectify that soon...

Owen said...

Hello Robert ! I would love to know how much time the artists worked on carving all the stones that were carved to put together a church of this degree of intricate and beautiful work... they labored days and weeks and months, year round no doubt, probably in rather hard conditions. Today, the photographer just follows his heart... And a fine week between school and the little one to you too...

Catherine said...

a wonderful series of shots...the second one is particularly stunning!!

Harry 'aka' Mojo said...

Hey Owen!
LOVED
THEM
ALL...
BRILLIANT!!

Deborah said...

Nice bit of whimsy that made me pay a different kind of attention to the pictures. Quite enjoyable!

babbler said...

Owen!!!
Thanks for the slug plug! I was charmed by the picture of the statued snail. We will be taking the young slugs by the tail on field trips to your museum of mollusk history. "OK you slugs! Stay in an orderly line and no gum chewing in here!"

The days just fly by so fast I can't keep up. More belly goo shall be applied for faster sliding from now on! From all of us here at Slug's Rest, enjoy the week ahead!