This is a short follow-up to Erica’s post about sheepdogs.
A few weeks ago we had a very nice lunch with the vicar (pastor) of a number of small churches in Northumberland. One of his churches is in a tiny place called Thockrington. The tiny church sits high up on a hill near what was once a village before cholera wiped it out. He encouraged me to take a bike ride up to see this unique church. So yesterday I did.
Lord William Beveridge and his wife are buried in the small cemetery surrounding the church. Beveridge is the esteemed economist who helped create the modern welfare state in England that led to the establishment of the excellent universal health care system called the National Health Service among other valuable social services designed to ensure a minimum standard of living “below which no one should be allowed to fall.”
After exploring the cemetery and spending some time praying in the quiet of the small church I made my way back through the field towards the road that runs past the church (there is no road to the church itself). But just as I went to get back on my bike a mass of sheep came up the one-lane road. They were being herded along by a shepherd and some sheepdogs. I captured this little video of the sheepdogs at work and watched with fascination as they did their work of trying to help move the sheep along. A number of times the sheep wandered off or started off back down the road but eventually the dogs, under the guidance of the man, helped guide them forward along the road and around the bend.
The sound in this video is the wind blowing across the Northumberland moors. A few minutes later I had to suspend my ride again to protect myself from a sudden hailstorm!