|The Steppe, Stavropol region, Russia. Ride 'em cowboy!|
Then this morning i accepted an offer of a lift to this 'small city', Elista, in the Kalmykia region of Russia. The driver pointed out that, oddly enough, we actually passed from Asia back into Europe (i hadn't been aware of being in Asia at all), but in lots of ways this place feels Asian. The people almost all look Asian-Chinese, and i was dropped off next to an impressive Buddhist Temple, containing 'the largest Buddha in Europe'.
Without any pretence to logical ordering, here is a beautiful 15th century prayer to Our Lady of Walsingham;
O gracious Lady, glory of Jerusalem,
Cypress of Sion and Joy of Israel,
Rose of Jericho and Star of Bethlehem,
O gracious Lady, our asking do not repel,
in mercy all women ever thou dost excel.
Therefore, Blessed Lady,
grant then thy great grace,
to all that thee devoutly visit in this place.