I think it was in July that we were in the pretty West Oxfordshire village of Combe for a game of cricket. The grounds are set just to the village edge, overlooking the small but imposing church of St Laurence - originally built in the Norman era and rebuilt in the late 1300s. Inside, to my delight, my eyes first fell on this magnificent 'Doom' wall painting showing the Last Judgement.
Discovered in 1894 by the Rev. S.Pearce, it is thought that they were painted around 1440 by the monks of nearby Eynsham Abbey. In the centre, wounds showing, is Christ triumphant. To his right, Apostles and the Saved, rising from their graves.
More ghoulishly (and perhaps more entertaining) - are the unsaved, suffering terrible agonies and being devoured by a Hellish demon monster. How rich the natural colours are, even after all the centuries.
Just beneath, a Crucifixion scene.
Over the South door, the commandments write large, flanked by Moses - only a faint tracery on the left - and Aaron with his mitre, to the right.
Dating from the seventeenth century, it covers an earlier mural of St Christopher - the most visible remains of which are a mermaid and fish.
The Annunciation - a partner to the Crucifixion on the other wall side - is badly decomposed, but the Angel Gabriel can be seen announcing 'Ave Maria, gratia plena, Dominus tecum' (Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee). And the hand of God reaching down from the Heavens. These two paintings, teamed with the Doom painting looming over them, would have shown the community the simple core of Christian thinking - Christ the son of God, born of Mary the Virgin, crucified that mankind might be saved to rise again on the final day of Judgement. Or not, as the case may be.
Higher up, angels glow jewel-like, preserved fragments of Medieval stained glass, dating to around 1450.
I returned thoughtfully to the cricket, pondering the paths of time; once the monks of Eynsham Abbey built and decorated the church at Combe. Today, our team - Eynsham - were playing the locals at cricket, in the shadow of St Laurence's, nestling in the surrounding trees, to the left.