Forgive the absence, dear reader, but a long hot summer behind us makes space for, well, a hot October and a pleasing 17 degrees at my beloved lido.  

Last year you might recall I was being chased by a human baked potato with a flyer for their Edinburgh show.

This year was a much tamer and a less noteworthy summer except I beat a Hollywood actor to a voiceover campaign; those travelling with BA might hear my dulcet tones.

For my daily jaunts to my second home.. yes, you guessed it, Parliament Fields lido. 

A few weekends ago this tranquil home from home became even more... well tranquil as Lucie and Julian Ormerod, who might be familiar names if you’ve read my column, turned this busy and buzzing locale into a play of mystic wonder.

Ham & High: Russell Bentley had a new experience at his 'home from homeRussell Bentley had a new experience at his 'home from home (Image: Archant)

I arrived to the sightings of a fire pit, Julian playing a hang drum (a mesmeric and pleasing sound that befits the vibes of this environ) and a beautiful crimson sky that set the scene perfectly.  

We tuned out, or should that be blissed out (with the comforting aid of blankets), to the sound of a gong, which sent my mind and body immediately to a place of well-needed and restorative peace.

This was preceded by a yoga practice with Lucie and qigong led by local hero Barry, a master in this practice.

For those new to the art of qigong, including myself, it is a system of coordinated body-posture and movement, breathing and meditation used for health, spirituality and martial arts training.

The evening wouldn’t have been the same without homemade chai tea and cake. A fitting end to a new and wonderful experience.

Lucie will be running another gong bath on the November 4 and tickets can be purchased on their website: 

  • Russell Bentley is an actor and writer based in Belsize Park.