I forgot to tell you that we heard, the first night, two girls in a school tell a tale they had made. My, this was delivered with punch, and a good yarn too. All this is part of the project where ‘A bit Crack’ storytellers are exploring stories to lead us back to our ancestors and the hills and forests. Stories based on archaeology and developed with children and with us. Pat told beautifully of the Viking raiders of Holy Island, and a really wired archaeologist did a whistle-stop tour over centuries.
But now we had spent a day walking, reached camp in a new field, swam the river and Nigel had made THAT chocolate cake. But I was not at peace, fed up with my lack of being. I put the hammock up in some truly massive sycamore trees, amongst a good bed of nettles. Lying and gazing up into the elephant like trunks, my innate racism hit me once more. I don’t think sycamores are good enough, they are intruders, and was secretly disappointed they were not oaks. This is not the first time my sad tree racism has been revealed to me. Seen, it dissolved and I slept well.
Next days walk led us to sit in a large stone cairn:
Our bodies wriggled into rocks,
Wind plays fiercely in our hair,
Horizon surrounding us.
Stones, bones of the biggest mother,
Hairy with shivering grasses.
Basin of hardness,
Holding a gathering,
From past to present.
We ended up at the Guide Hut.
Here I found an Ash tree to hang up the hammock.
We wolfed down some delicious dinner and next door was the village hall which was packed with people. Here the talents of Chris were revealed. Had he taken a burning brand and torched the school he could not have made us warmer. No he made everyone feel so at home and at the same time so inspired to be on this adventure, I don’t think Ive ever heard such a wonderful presenter. And then Malcolm told us how he had worked with the children and then gone up onto the great hill Yeavering Bell to digest, and how a lamb had found him there and spent the whole night nuzzling up to him.
Here is the lamb and then we heard the stories themselves, beautifully and clearly told.
Then after all that had happened we sat round the camp fire, and just when we felt we couldn’t take any more, we found out we could. And we began to share deeply and honestly what had happened for each of us that day.