Friday, 20 August 2010

A Big Wish, A Little Magic?

When you were a child, did you ever say 'if I can run to the end of the lane before the milk tanker gets there then I will get what I want for my birthday' or 'if i can get this piece of paper in the bin from here then *insert boys name here* will ask me out'.
And sometimes the magic worked didn't it? Sometimes, if you wished something enough, and you asked your wish a lot, and you showed your intent by beating the milk tanker, or running all the way home, or giving up something that you loved, sometimes your wishes came true.

Well, I have a wish, and it's a big wish. I'm wishing for a YES, and this yes could change our lives. It could make such a big difference to our little family. And I'm struggling as well, as I know there are more important things in the world, I know there are others that are wishing for food, or shelter, or protection, or health, and I know that compared to these wishes, mine doesn't seem so important.

But I'm wishing it with all my heart, and I'm wishing it long and loud, but I'm not sure how loud I can wish from my house.

So I ask how I can wish louder, how my wish can be amplified, how I can beat the milk tanker to the end of the lane.

And in the night I dream of Isis, the Egyptian mother goddess. I have always felt a connection to Isis, despite her being worshiped in such s far off place. I think she fits my understanding of the female mother aspect. I dream that I have to get high, high and windswept and empty, like the deserts of Egypt. And there is only one place I can think of that fits, Dartmoor.
I dream that i have to climb up high to make my wish, and that  have to take my children, but only if the sun is shining when I wake up. It has been horribly wet and dismal here for a while so I figure I'm probably off the hook!

No, the sun is streaming through the window first thing. It was, to be fair, the only time for the next few hours that the sun showed itself, but I was going to the moor!

And I knew where I had to go as well, without thinking, Yes Tor of course, for a Yes!
Further investigation revealed that Yes Tor was widely recognised as being the highest and trickiest to climb on the whole moor, standing at some 2031ft and being heavy on the granite boulders. But that was where we had to go. I picked out a route that meant we could park at the base of  neighbouring West Mill Tor, climb over or skirt around that one and then tackle Yes.

So we set off, with a printed bit of map, some waterproofs, sandwiches and a pack of celebratory kit-kat's for the top.

We parked, and the boys very quickly set off up West Mill Tor, so I guessed we were going up and over!

the view from the top of the 1st Tor

Looking across at Yes Tor it did look like quit a scramble, but we were fueled by our wish and the speed with which we had scaled West Mill Tor, so we rested not, but carried on.

As we neared the top I felt so relieved that had nearly done it. I had Fred in the back pack and he is fairly heavy now. I was also concerned as Jack is a notoriously bad walker who tends to complain and drag his way around even a short walk. He had done really really well but I felt we had probably pushed our luck with him a little!

At the very top there were a couple of hikers with poles and gators and all the gear. They asked if they could take my photo as they hadn't expected to see someone being carried up the Tor! One of them said I was making him feel like he just wasn't trying hard enough!

Then Fin, who was convinced that we hadn't followed the map quite right, asked if we were really on Yes Tor...

'Oh no' they said, 'this is West Mill Tor, that's Yes Tor over there'

It would seem the first Tor we had climbed was Row Tor, and the biggy was West Mill Tor, and the monster beyond was Yes Tor.
And it made sense, 3 boys, 3 Tors, and now we were really being tested.
Bu we had to do it, if the magic was going to work, if the wish was going to be heard, it had to be Yes Tor for a YES.
I have to say though that at this point I wasn't sure how we were going to do it. I really felt like I had given my all and I was fairly sure Jack was running on good luck. And as we looked at the Tor a cloud passed over it and cast an ominous shadow over its top.

Between West Mill Tor and Yes Tor is Red-a-Ven brook, which is basically a bog, which was fun! You sink faster with a 2 year old on your back! We followed the sheep, hoping they knew something we didn't, but it turned out they just knew they weren't as heavy as me.

But somehow, little by little, scramble by scramble, we got nearer and nearer until we were within reach of the top. And by now Jack was ahead of me, and seeming to jump up the boulders and run up the sheep tracks. I was astounded.

The hikers we had met on the previous Tor had beaten us to it, but only just, and we had stopped for sandwiches half way up.

And we made it! To the 'roof of Devon'. I don't think I have ever seen the boys so elated and joyous. The wind was incredible. Fin almost had to hold on to Jack for fear he might get blown right off the top.

And we made our wish, right up here where the earth meets the sky. We made it big and loud, and shared our food, and felt full of sky and earth and YES.

Sheltering from the wind, this is their 'have a break, have a kit-kat' photo, although it does look more like their 'Groucho Marx' photo.

Yes Tor is also home to the highest bronze age carins in Devon. Although They have all been 'disturbed' in the intervening centuries, there is plenty of evidence left.

You can see in the distance...the rain. I noticed as well.

This is us, legging it! We got absolutely soaked. Rain up there is like stepping into a shower. But it had held off whilst we climbed the Tors and for that I was grateful.

And I found this at the bottom of the Tor, as we were running from the rain. A spiral in the granite, an ancient symbol of life, and the mother, fertility and the universe. And a clockwise spiral at that, a spiral to bring things towards you.

When we got back to the car I checked the time, it had taken just under 3 hours. 3 Tors, with 3 boys, in 3 hours.


  1. Love this story. May your wish come true.

  2. fantastic......much love to you, ISIS! and here's hoping all your wishes come true!

  3. This is amazing. Thank you for leaving a comment on my weblog so I could discover yours and immediately add it to my daily reading list.

    As you wish for yourself, I wish for you too. And many blessings also.


Please feel free to leave a comment. I love reading them and hearing your thoughts.