Twas the night before Greenbelt…..

2016-08-24 17.55.18

And all through the house………

I have strewn camping equipment – only repacked the rucksack twice today

My brain is awhirl with the things I should take

And a journey ahead is making me wonder

If I should have said I would go?

But I’ve bought the tickets now – so I’m definitely going

To spend a few days

In a field

With a few thousand other people

And while I’m not “sorted for E’s and whizz” – I am definitely sorted for

Teabags, toothpaste, clean knickers and socks

I have cheated a bit.  My dear friend Helen is taking a spare bag – because she is going a day later, in a car (what luxury!) She picked the bag up yesterday – so I can’t repack that one any more.

I’m going to cheat in the morning too – I’m going to get a taxi to the train station – oh shucks, failed at the first fence – so much for independence!

I’ve checked all the train changes – and looked at maps of the various stations online so I can figure out where to run to.  I have to change trains twice tomorrow – and only 9 minutes between trains – eeek!  Am I the only one who worries? Some people seem so laid back about travel – I wish I was.  I can guarantee I will have to nip to the toilet “just once more” at least 3 times while I’m waiting for the taxi.

But then – by tomorrow night, God willing, I will have arrived at greenbelt, put my tent up, had something to eat, blown up my air bed, decorated a star for the URC tent – and be enjoying the atmosphere at what promises to be a most excellent festival. I’m sure it will be worth all the worry – most things are.  Where would we be without a bit of worry – we’d never try anything new!

I am drawing the line at abseiling, zip wires, and anything that’s a bit high – but otherwise – I’m up for giving anything a go!

Oh – and I’ve just had a text message saying if I want to help setting up and painting tomorrow I should bring some old clothes – hahahaha – I wonder where I can fit those????

Not a chance – I’ll just have to walk around in painty clothes.

I have heard that we are going to be tweeted, instagrammed and facebooked throughout the weekend – so keep an eye on social media #URStars and you might just catch a glimpse of me (or someone else you recognise) having fun, and hopefully by then I will be feeling a little less fraught!

Chow for now!

Analogue soup

I consider myself a very privileged person – because I have an automatic soup maker.  Any time I want, I can make myself a bowl of soup in 20 minutes, or rather my soup machine can do it for me, if I put vegetables in the top and turn it on.  I like it best in the winter when I need something soothing and hot. and quick.

But sometimes, there is nothing better than making a pan of soup the old fashioned way.

I had thought when the summer holiday time came around that I would have a quieter time at work.  Once the school sports day, summer trip, integration class presentation day etc were over, I had expected that perhaps I might get my day off every week.  Well, it hasn’t happened yet.  At the end of July we had a community barbecue – lots of organising and bringing people together – and it went well.  Someone even won the huge teddy bear:

2016-07-29 15.48.20

This was not the first prize winner – who said they really didn’t want to carry it home on the bus 🙂

We have also been host to the local residents association youth playscheme:

2016-08-03 10.08.30

Today has also been a very full day – and as with everything, nothing goes as smoothly as we might imagine.

So this evening I arrived home a bit “chewed” (is this just a northern phrase? I’m not sure – but it means a little frayed at the edges).  What I craved was some comfort food.  Something warming and healthy and tasty.  SOUP!  But I didn’t get out my soupmaker.  Today I did something I find more therapeutic.  I got out the old grater. Peeled the carrots and turnip – and really put a great deal of effort into preparing the vegetables:

2016-08-04 17.26.00

There’s a lot of talk on the internet about mindfulness – but what I needed today was mindlessness.  Using all my energy doing something I didn’t have to think about at all – grating away the cares of the day.  Some people swear by making bread to rid themselves of their frustrations – but I honestly didn’t have that kind of energy!! This evening I spent a whole hour – peeling, grating, stirring, simmering – until I had a big pan of comfort food.  Something I had done just for me – and I heartily recommend it to anyone!

2016-08-04 18.08.16

I’ve also been away practising camping.

2016-07-22 20.39.20

This was my little tent a couple of weeks ago when some of my scout leader friends took me away for the weekend.  This was to prepare me for Greenbelt – I have never put a tent up in my life, let alone carried everything I need in that little rucksack. I say little, but when I left the house I almost fell over backwards!!  I’m quite proud of myself, i have to say – I learned to put the tent up by watching youtube videos – I only needed help with a couple of things: firstly, the groundsheet goes shiney side down, secondly, there are no “spare” guy ropes and pegs – they DO all have to be used, and thirdly – if you blow up your air bed too much you will fall off every time you turn over during the night (owww!)  So I’m all prepared for Greenbelt – 5 days in a field near Kettering with a load of other old hippies – bring it on!!! (I’m now wondering if I can fit my soupmaker into my rucksack – perhaps not)