Busy woman, active not angry

Last update: 3.12.12 First posted: 3.12.12 by in

Its December surely its time to stop?

Nope it is not! no stopping here in the valley of light.
The last few weeks have been as silly as ever with up to three lots of talking in one day.

On Thursday I forgot to take out a slide for the French visitors, they didn’t seem to mind my “French people are a bit bonkers” image. In fact they positively beamed at the suggestion.

They promised me another flag would be on the map soon as they were determined to start a project on their return.
What possesses folk to come to the Pennines in November?

We are blessed in IET with perfect French speakers and also a couch surfing host.
After the French I did some students so to speak!

I slowed down for the French and chopped out stuff as I went along that they might not get, like “up the creek without a paddle” so when it was the students turn I had to speed up and put things back into the narrative, all that is to much for busy woman, to old, to cold and crap at crosswords, they sat in silence but it turns out it was all all right, that’s what students do? Even when they like you they sit very very still?
Third talk of the day was Guisley.
OMG the loved one hated driving through the madness of Bradford, or it might have been Leeds. Its weird when you live in a small town and brave the traffic, its scary stuff that some folk have to do every day.
Ever since I was a drugs councillor I have hated driving, if you knew the amount of folk smashed out of their brains driving on the roads, whether that’s legal tranquillisers or illegal stuff its shocking, every day would be a duvet day if you only knew.
After the drive from hell we met a great bunch of folk who look after and are restoring a park, so on the ball, so passionate, so doing it.

I felt a bit of a fraud. I had only been their a few minutes when I realised my trousers were inside out, great, filled with confidence (not) I took the floor to tell them how we were doing stuff. As if they were not doing enough!
Anyway lessons to be learned.
Dressing in the dark is dangerous.
Driving through Leeds or Bradford is dangerous.
Down sizing the presentation is dangerous.
Determining how students might react is dangerous.

Last weekend two beautiful Brazilian women were here to see what we are doing

while our chairperson Pam was in Brazil telling the tale of Todmorden, weird or what?
I never cease to be amazed at the passion of young people to travel and find out stuff.
I was given a beautiful badge and told that my yard is lovely. In winter time I pick my way through the firewood piles and ice thinking the very opposite and cursing the rotten Yard.

Little Otto is growing a pace, so know worries about number 11, someone said today how is the new baby and I said he is great, then I thought mmm I don’t think I have seen him awake much he is always wrapped up snug against the cold or sucking on a breast.

Since I last wrote, we have had Kidsfest and the Valley of the Lights.

Its so lovely to get the house back, every surface of the has been strewn with lights, fabric , glitter and banners .

Thank god I don’t care any more about the order of the home, I am now truly shabby chic or sheik, as I like to spell it.
Got to say the biggest draw back of being part of a movement that has no office or paid staff is who is going to store all the stuff, where will it be accessible?

Upstairs bedroom now the office, downstairs the meeting\store room\plotting shed, back yard for the tools gas bottles and dangerous kit.


I have taken like a duck to water to the production of up-cycled banners and gorilla lighting.

Both me and the loved ones knees are jiggered, so we have enlisted the help of ladder man.

Why do we do it in the dark ? naughty but nice………

If you want to light up your town its easy, new lights with batteries last for 29 days on a built in timer £20. No one bats an eyelid at folk with ladders erecting lights in the dark!

Make your house speak!

Kidsfest was a great success a big noisy scary do, hundreds of cakes eaten millions of sparkles, beautiful costumes, happiness, and a credit to the folk who do it for nowt every year.

Our town councillor is Swedish and she makes the best grub ever, she fed all the volunteers with her native delights, it was lovely. In any event the woman who feeds the folk is the real hero well done Margaretta.



After that we had the valley of the lights .
We worked liked crazy to get things right , making signs, persuading folk , cajoling folk , talking it up with fingers crossed it was a dream . trust me it was amazing you can check out youtube and their website, bravo you good people who said sod the rain and the cold we are going to get out their and make a show in November, cos we are hardy old northerners who love a challenge.

Nothing like an Italian to brighten up our life.
This man is Leonelli we can call him Leo, he is on placement here studying the impact of our actions.

He’s a fast learner and a gutsy guy, brave enough to pose with the mayor Abid Hussien, brave enough to wear High heels for the white ribbon campaign, brave enough to make lanterns at Kidsfest with 500 or more little people.

And yes there is more, he has promised to cook for Estelle and me.


the weekend came and went, Saturday an 8.30 start to Bradford for a TEDx.

It was brilliant, Adam and I were gripped by brilliant speakers, washed over with kindness and warmth, the food was lovely and we came away full of inspiration and renewed passion for our dream.
We know that some of those women we met will help us in our work, really help us we just know it.
We were doubly rewarded the venue had a David Shrigley exhibition on, our favourite man of the moment, dark but spot on. www.davidshrigley.com
who that boy?
Well Adam is a special man, a proper man, one who believes in a kinder world, a man who puts his beliefs into actions, a man who drinks tea.
Adam will come up with many more surprises, here is a sneak preview of some about to blossom.

He is the first man to erect a teepi in the church grounds, but hey every church lawn should have one!

He is a brew master and soon his tea skills will be evident and he will reap his reward in a kinder world.
He is good on ladders and colouring in too, all the skills needed for an activist.

I had better stop soon,
Here is a nice Christmassy picture of Helena’s lovely recipe made by Rhona and sold in a local shop, its chocolate beetroot mince meat -not, if you see what I mean…..

Homes and gardens cute eh?

Dream on dear busy women who planned and dreamed for months of all I would do and could do now I have time to do nothing ………………….
This is a picture of my last of the year community meeting on our gardening Sunday,

What a year we have had, yes its freezing eating in an old chapel but who cares after a few hours gardening, we are Activists not lazy bums or victims we are ACTIVISTS

It’s a busy week ahead, tomorrow Wakefield Tuesday the council, Thursday family services then the concert and Friday school assembly in Scotland in between sort out the pressies, the chickens, and don’t forget the grandchildren’s names ..
Over and out a very happy busy woman.

Waving not drowning,
Standing not sitting,
Active not angry.


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