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  • Writer's pictureEliza

Broken Lighthouse

We went to visit Lincoln today. 

A pootling, meandering sort of a day was so very welcome after a busy week of wonderful visits but lots of travelling. If you haven’t been, I recommend this incredible city. 

Smoke huffing dragons and key trails kept us busy in the castle, potters around the Cathedral extension and cheese scones were order of the day. It is a beautifully undiscovered place and I selfishly hope it stays that way! 

It is also one of those places where you cannot really escape a bit of a history lesson. Today was no exception but it stuck with me as more poignant. 

You may not have noticed but the statue of Queen Victoria in the castle is, in fact, George. You can tell up close but from afar dear George has some strong resemblances. My amazing husband who loves an ADHD rabbit hole, hopped straight onto researching…in detail…the history of the statue. To true form he found out something many others would have missed - another gem from his wonderful way of seeing and being in the world. 

Our dear Victoria-George is also a lighthouse. An inland lighthouse at that. 

The Victoria-George-lighthouse stood atop a towering column miles outside the Lincoln walls and guided travellers across the fenland. 

What a sight it must have been. Imposing for one but also I imagine, comforting. A symbol you were on the right path and heading home or at least to some civilisation. 

We drove past the remaining third of the column on the way to our next spot. It was visible above the trees but far from the beacon it once was.

Being stuck in a car is very dangerous for thinking. I kept coming back to this beacon and guide, still there but harder to find. It resonated with my experience of adulthood. 

As a child I was blessed to have parents who were a beacon if I ever got stuck or needed guidance. They helped me navigate and thankfully still do. Friends were built daily over years at school and although perhaps did not offer the best advice at times, kept me feeling a sense of hopefulness through those hormonal teenage years. 

Now in adulthood I look around and I find it harder to spot the beacons of hope and guidance. Social media claims to be full of gurus but I don’t know how authentic they are. I don’t know if they are just out to money grab. Waiting lists for therapists or help with healthcare make finding advice tricky. Friendships at work never seem to be the same as those made during school years. Despite really wanting to, I can never quite work out how to be in a professional environment and build true deep long lasting friendships. Community is not what it was. Generations now seem to move in different spheres and the overlaps are fleeting. I miss they advice and guidance of people who have gone before. 

The lighthouse is still there, but it is harder to see. You have to go searching and be particularly intentional. 

I ponder, is it any wonder people are so isolated, lonely, making life choices which put them into vulnerability. It makes sense that people are becoming more individualistic and prone to accepting social media’s claims. 

How can we re-build the lighthouse? How do we make it more visible? 

We entered another town. This town has an amazing group who volunteer to litter pick and help maintain the shared spaces, pathways and parklands. We drive past a small shrubbery and there is a man digging away and planting summer bedding flowers. 

There it is. A real life lighthouse. 

A gift worth giving. I hope I can be a lighthouse too. Broken maybe, but still standing all the same. 

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