It has delicious, cheap organic beer and hot homemade meals which taste divine. This makes a great base to explore Brecon Beacons National Park, but due to the weather, which is cold, rainy and fogged in, I'm off. In fact it's so foggy I can't see out of the hostel!! I carefully make the drive through the park to the quaint village of Brecon itself in search of accomodations for the night. I find a cute B&B called Mulberry House, and for $50 gives me my own room plus breakfast. It puts me right in town, across from the Cathedral of St. John. Although it's raining, rather than go into the church, I wait until later. I'm not sure why I do this, but I just go with the feeling that I should wait. So I get a few snacks from the grocery store, take a drive through the countryside and explore the town. I wind down courvy roads and lovely storybook villages with thatched cottages and tudor syle houses that have been there since that royal household ruled England. I see the proverbial rolling green countryside on the road back to Brecon (pronounced Breckon) and finally head for the cathedral, where they were now holding Mass. When I heave open the oak door, I feel as if I'm struck by the light of God Himself. The most glorious music caresses my ears, filling the cold stone chamber with what literally sounds like choirs of angels. Gorgeous Welsh angels. What they say about the Wesh choir is true. With the accompanying acoustics from the old church, the voices sound angelic, washing over me and the other pilgrims. I am utterly enchanted by the beauty and I cannot move. I stay for the entire Mass, captivated by the sounds of the choir's melodic chants. The soaring music fills my head and heart as it fills the entire cathedral. I know now why I was not supposed to go into this church right away. I'm so thrilled I listened to my intuition! And I wonder why it is that virtually every time I step into a holy site, music is playing??? This is noteworthy, and this concert is so unexpected and so delightful I see if I can record it on my MP3. I feel a little guilty, but now I can hear the voices of angels whether I'm in Wales or in Lake Wobegon. Delightful. I feel very humbled, and very grateful today.
Time to leave the lovely town of Bath and head west into Wales. Driving on the M4 to a huge bridge joining England and Wales costs 5.10 to get across, which meant $10.20!! Yikes. But all this is forgotten as I finally make it to the rolling hills of the Welsh countryside and see the familiar scenery of sheep and green velvet blanketing the land. Gorse is in bloom with its yellow flowers that pop and sing to me as I drive through the bucolic setting, as is the magenta and purple rhodedendron. Seeing these blooming makes me think of continuing west to catch the ferry to Ireland now, so as to see the rhodies and heather in bloom. Wales has winding country roads, ancient castles, tasty organic beer and green hills that call to you to get out of the car and climb. Fantastic country. Too bad the weather is so crappy, as I really want to go hiking. I end up staying in mid south Wales, at a youth hostel set up for hiking the Pen-y-rith, the tallest moutain in the area. The plan is to hike it tomorrow morning before heading to cousin Michelle's. The YHA here is great!!