Genius Loci is the impression the distinctive character or atmosphere of a place makes on the mind, body and soul. I sensed the Genius Loci of Strata Florida long before I had physically visited the remains. I grew up in Aberarth, a small coastal village on the west coast of Wales, 20 miles from the Abbey. I have vivid childhood memories of being on the beach anticipating the unveiling of the Gordi. A Gored is the Welsh term for a fishing pool or weir, and at low tide, the remains of twelve ancient Goredi reveal themselves along the coastline. It was mesmerising to imagine that eight hundred years ago, the Cistercian monks fished in these pools.