Photograph by Mark Read, Guardian/Observer supplement, Sunday 17th Feb 08
Thanks to Keliotes weblog.
Allthough it is a beautiful image it is not a natural situation. Why place a chair if there are benches to sit on. The photographer obviously placed the chair and asked the monk to sit there for a better picture. In the normal routine the monks never eat alone.
Perhaps the monk is not eating but is preparing something for the meal? If you notice, whatever he is doing is being done on the bench and not on the table. Also, on the floor to his left is what looks like a light blue bucket or container. Judging by the two baskets in front of him, it looks more like he is filling them with bread rather than eating, wouldn’t you agree?
And knowing Fr. K., he was none too keen on being photographed here, but rather grudgingly acquiesced, knowing that the photographer had the abbot’s blessing to do this.