Day 107 Wed 1st July and finally our weekly local outdoor market opened, of course as I have been walking down for weeks now only to find it still not on, I hadn’t thought this through, so it was a 2 hr round trip. I set out at 10 am but should have set out earlier to avoid the heat (hottest day so far at 42 degrees), so most of the time was spent taking a break under shady trees. With no fresh produce found until the end of the second downhill street I then had to take breaks with the weight of the trolley uphill in this extreme heat. Exhausted I sit here but happy to have fresh produce once again, it feels back to normal! I have to say everybody was wearing a mask and keeping a distance, taking their time queueing as they would in a supermarket, if you have ever been to a Spanish open market you will know the difficulty of being heard to get served around the bustling fruit and veg stalls, but not today, it was almost civilised. In this heat wearing a mask feels suffocating and uphill you soon get out of breath, exhausted and overheated, so lessons learnt for next week, set off earlier, buy less heavy produce, stop less to chatter and remember its not the time of year to amble around every stall along the way!
In my youth I used to go mountain climbing, hiking and other outdoor activities, I also worked in a Mountaineering and Ski shop where of course in those days there weren’t too many around. I met, climbed or trekked with many people in the business including the likes of Chris Bonington and a young Alan Hinkes. Some people I knew at that time are still out on adventures, 2 in particular now co ordinate and head Mountain Rescue teams, so when I saw this article about authorities having found more than 200 people illegally wild camping, partying and lighting fires on summits in the Lake District over the weekend, I immediately thought of them.
Of course in an ideal world we would have complete freedom to go wherever we want and spend nights in nature when we want, but the fact is laws were originally enforced for safety reasons. Weather can change quickly especially in the lake district and we have seen in recent years how quickly flooding has occurred, police tweeted speaking to campers near a body of water: “Camping overnight not currently allowed. Setting up your illegal campsite in a reservoir bed before a storm – terrible idea. Fines issued. Campsite packed up.” In other incidences police reported damage caused to trees and property by campers, and litter being left behind. You can see in the article a photo of a damaged tree that will take years to heal South Lakes Police tweeted: “Senseless. Just one example of the appalling behaviour our patrols have encountered from visitors to the Lake District the destruction of this beautiful place will not be tolerated. If you can’t abide by the countryside code then please don’t visit.”
All this talk of mountains and the Lake District remind me of my mornings camping with permission, in farmers fields watching the morning mist, huddled up to keep warm and starting the day with fresh eggs and fresh milk direct from the churns!
Day 108 and I am still recovering from yesterdays trip where I overheated as there was no escaping the heat, at least my new cooler was a god send although moving away from it, the flat was still unbearable. I couldn’t sleep because of pain in my leg which I got from sitting in the draft of the cooler. As a massage therapist I was often called out on emergencies by clients in pain during the summer months of which 95% were caused by drafts from fans, open windows and especially air conditioning in cars. It seems ridiculous to add heat to the pain in high temperatures but it was the quickest way to ease it, so on our hottest night so far I put a heat pad on my leg then kept it warm with my hands, it did eventually ease enough to fall asleep for a few hours thank goodness. Today we are seeing the same 42 degree temperatures so lesson learnt, I will avoid the drafts and look forward to tomorrow when temperatures are forecast to go back to a more manageable 33-35 degrees.
Vanilla Ice apparently thinks it’s the perfect time to headline an Independence Day Throwback Beach Party in the heart of pandemic hotspot Texas, $300 VIP tickets have apparently sold out! On Tuesday “Asteroid Day” an Italian astronaut felt the need to warn us that “Between small and big, there are more than 1 million asteroids out there that could hit the Earth”. This of course made it to the mainstream news to add more fear to those already in a bad place in 2020. Britons are reluctant to co operate with trace and track as people way up the expert (political) advise stating it’s needed to control and stop the virus, against their feeling it as an intrusion into their privacy. For some unknown reason we are again reminded of this older story that Y chromosomes are disappearing in humans, some believe if the Y chromosome does disappear it does not necessarily mean that males themselves are on their way out as other species that have actually lost their Y chromosomes completely, males and females are both still necessary for reproduction.
Devastating to see the mystery surrounding the “completely unprecedented” deaths of hundreds of elephants in Botswana, with more than 350 elephant carcasses in the Okavango Delta since the start of May no one knows why they are dying. In a different article it stated locals frustration that lab results on samples are still weeks away according to the government and as most are dying around water holes the tests should have been done in May with urgency. The Archbishop of Canterbury talks of “thinking again” about portraying Jesus as white as Black Lives Matter protests still go on around the world. A painting by Sharon Cummings called “How Do You See Me” depicts this debate well.
Day 109 and I am certainly feeling this approaching full moon and eclipse, no I’m not a werewolf but they do effect my energy levels. I don’t think that they make me crazy or irrational but I guess you would have to ask those around me, they do however leave me with complete brain fog and a need to let go and switch off. I always observe more than usual chaos around others at these times too, my son yesterday received a 100 euro bonus from work, a sweetener for his pittance of a wage, leaving for lunch the car wouldn’t start so he called the insurance, they kick started it so he got home. Going back to work it happened again so it was taken to the garage, fortunately it wasn’t major electronics just a new battery which cost, yes you guessed it, exactly 100 euros! So there were mixed emotions of thankfulness with a tinge of irony and disappointment as the treat was taken away within 3 hours! Right now in my tiredness and heat exhaustion it is time to honour our earth and her moon, letting emotions go and pass through as they are only temporary. The heat hasn’t subsided as forecast so it’s time to go rest, to sit and honour the magnificence and beauty that we find if only we look.
Talking of honouring I will leave you with two snippets from Dakota, the first is an old video telling the story of the Crazy Horse Monument which has been in progress for over 70 years and his family now say it may take another 100 to complete. It was started by Korczak Ziolkowski in 1948, after his death his wife took over and now his descendants work on it. Once complete the Lakota leaders monument will be the largest mountain carving in the world ten times larger than Mount Rushmore.
Lastly is the beautiful sculpture in Dakota called “Digity” and a quote from the Sculptor himself:
Dignity of Earth and Sky
“Standing at a crossroads, Dignity echoes the interaction of earth, sky, and people. She brings to light the beauty and promise of the indigenous peoples and cultures that still thrive on this land. My intent is to have the sculpture stand as an enduring symbol of our shared belief that all here are sacred, and in a sacred place.”
— a gift to the people of South Dakota from
The Norm and Eunabel McKie Family
–Sculptor and South Dakota Artist Laureate
Dale Claude Lamphere
As always please stay safe and take precautions to protect yourself and loved ones including taking care of your mental health. Stay cool in the heat and warm in the cold, remember to honour your body, mind, emotions and of course our planet with gentle loving kindness💜