St. Aelred of Rievaulx (1109-1167) early showed signs of promise. The son of Eilaf, a Saxon priest, Aelred was educated at Roxburgh,
the ancient Scottish capital, where he was known for his intellectual talents. The DNB notes that as a child, Aelred prophesied the death of a bad archbishop of York; the DNB notes also that scholars doubt this since Thomas, the archbishop at that time, was not bad. When Aelred finished his schooling, he became the steward to King David of Scotland. He left his job c. 1133 to join the Cistercian community at Rievaulx.
He was the first abbot of Rievaulx’s daughterhouse in Revesby, Lincolnshire, but he returned to Rievaulx in 1147 to be abbot. During the last ten years of his life, his health deteriorated, and he suffered from gout and a bad cough. St. Aelred wrote his most famous work, The Mirror of Charity, at the request of Bernard of Clairvaux.
On Spiritual Friendship is a Christianized version of Cicero’s De amicitia. Aelred also penned lives of St. Ninian and of Edward the Confessor, in addition to a rule for recluses and a genealogy of the kings of England. His correspondence and his work on St. Cuthbert have been lost. from Catholic Online
Reputations have a long shelf-life. As I prepared to come to England people warned me that the food is not that good and encouraged to go to France for food. Well, the foodies came to town this week and set up camp in the city centre. This weekend is the end of The York Food Festival.
The photos speak for themselves. I’m no photographer but I think I got enough for you to see there is no danger of bad “vittles” in these parts. York leads the country in organic, sustainable agriculture. Many of the people in the booths grew what they sell or at least know the people who grew what is in the booth.
As one man explained to me (yes, I’m still talking to people) that when the hoof & mouth epidemic broke years ago people cast about to find what else they could do to sustain the farms. The products you see in these photos are the results of that tragedy.
The smells of roasting meat in the air people walking about with their children and their dogs amidst tents and booths looks a little like the Grove in Oxford might this weekend. No marching bands but the street musicians do what they can to keep the party going.
Nowhere in Britain is far from the sea. Scotland is as far from York as Kentucky is Memphis.
This young man told me that the fish in front of him was swimming of the coast of Scotland last Wednesday.
One cannot live simply by bread. No danger of that in York this weekend.
James’ company supplies people who sign up for fresh vegetables to be delivered in season. This sounds very similar to what Woodson Farms of Oxford, Mississippi delivered at Saint John’s this past growing season.
A few flowers for the table and off you go with amazing food. All that was lacking was an Alka Seltzer booth in the middle. I’m just saying. JWS