50 Things part 9

30 Cheerful chilli 30 CheerfulChilli_Logo

Walk on Otley Chevin then eat delicious veggie food is my kind of day. Though the servings were so big I should’ve saved the walk till after. The ‘experimental’ gig in a Bradford cellar was not the best followup to a vaguely romantic meal. I had to leave C there after 10 minutes of earsplitting noise, er, music. I destroy my hearing for no man, even if it was our first gig together.

31. Fewston Reservoir

Sunny walk around Fewston reminded me of my free festival days. I used to come wild camping here with a bottle of whisky, a manboy and a sleeping bag. What else would we need? We also came to a tiny festival here once, where I was nearly driven off the side of the road by an irate local, who objected to lots of dirty crusties having fun. 3 bolts of lightning hit each other a few feet away from my tent. Exciting times.31 fewston

32. Castlerigg

My favourite stone circle by far, just outside Keswick. The views all around are so amazing I don’t attempt to capture them on film. 360 degrees of mountains and sky, usually with all weathers featuring somewhere. The Bald Hiker has some beautiful pics, including this one.

Castlerigg by The Bald Hiker

Castlerigg by The Bald Hiker

I was a bit surprised to see an ice cream van up here. I’ve come for several solstices over the years and more recently the rangers have been very keen to get rid of us as soon as the sun’s up. Maybe paying customers are different.

33. Solfest glamping

Solfest is a nice little festival in the NW which has a great healing area I sometimes work in with the Travelling Homeopaths Collective. THC logoI decided to treat myself to a squrt (tiny yurt) with bed and bedding supplied. It saved a lot of faffing, but cost a LOT and sadly couldn’t dampen the earthshaking qualities of the allnight dubstep bass. My earplugs didn’t either.

34. Reflexology

34.  reflexologyOne of highlight of Solfest was a session with Edie ‘In Safe Hands’. It was wonderful lying back in the sun having my feet massaged. We then had an hour or so chat which was more like therapy. I was surprised to find myself telling her about my (dead) mum, an old betrayal and many other things. She said she could feel I was holding on to something and later that night I decided to just stop and go with whatever came along. I then spent an idyllic weekend feeling in lurve with C, which is NOT like me at all. Was great fun, but not sure I can keep it up. My critical parent is never far away, which reminds me of ‘Games People Play’ by Eric Berne. Great book.

50 Things part 8

26. Butterfly House

Hot and humid day in Leeds, why not go to Tropical World? Well, the clue’s in the name, it was almost unbearably hot. Butterflies everywhere, chasing each other around. Beautiful.

Flowers outside Tropical World, Leeds.

Flowers outside Tropical World, Leeds.

I love the meerkats but can’t help feeling sorry for them. They’re so hardwired to be on the lookout that they must be living on adrenaline stuck in a glass box surrounded by constant ‘danger’. They seem to do the sentry thing halfheartedly and there’s nowt else for them to do. Poor things, just for our entertainment.

27. Lakes

Being chauffered around beautiful mountains, lakes, scary passes (especially Hardknott). Throw in a 4 star hotel offer (Low Wood Bay) and the most comfortable bed I’ve ever slept in. Bliss. We also looked for several neolithic stone sites mentioned in Julian Cope’s Gazetteer, but forgot to bring the OS map so managed not to find any of them. windermere

We did find the Blackwell arts n crafts house, which was beautiful. Am now musing on how to incorporate some into my own. First step DECLUTTER.

28. Massage

A birthday present from a friend. Home visit, massage, job done. Thanks Rita.

29. Isle of Lewis

I’ve wanted to visit Callanish stone circle for years. Maybe having my birthday on the summer solstice has given me my interest in standing stones. They’re also usually in beautiful places and I remember leaning against one at Stonehenge thinking it was amazingly big when I was 10. Such a shame what they’ve done to it now. Little did I know that Callanish has 3 circles within walking distance of each other, plus on Lewis they seem to be everywhere. As were golden eagles, beautiful beaches, rainbows, Harris tweed, art galleries, fields of buttercups, stone age buildings. Not sure why there is so much pampas grass blowing in the wind (let’s not go down the Comic Strip presents route).

Pampas blowing in the wind on Lewis.

Pampas blowing in the wind on Lewis.

We visited an amazing bothy built on a cliff edge, attended an art opening, sewed some more of Jasia’s wedding quilt (ongoing for 4 years now) and did a lot of laughing. Thanks to Helen for the marathon drive, and for taking us to the Real Food Cafe in Tyndrum. Perfect pit stop.

This year has involved catching up with so many old friends and reminiscing, but I’ve decided that that needs to be balanced by looking forwards, making plans and new memories. There are still 31 things on my list to fit in this year, which is becoming more of a challenge than I expected. A good one though 🙂