I have been on several courses lately and my brain is frazzled, it's like being back at Uni, trying to take it all in. I think I lost the plot towards the end. The Permaculture course was a personal choice, the others mandatory for work. So what did I learn? I have been doing 'permaculture' for many years without even knowing it.....well I am an old hippy at heart. We had a really enthusiastic tutor full of ideas and energy. Putting his ideas into practice in his own home. Compost toilet, rocket stove mass heater, all in his eco hut that he built himself. I love all of that but there is no way in hell I would pursued the bearded one that we should have a compost toilet. These things are all wonderful but both of you have to be on board. He is keen on us having solar panels as they are pretty mainstream now, but as for some of the more way out things, it's not going to happen. Having grown up on a farm his dad and himself look with amusement at my overgrown veg patch with cardboard scattered around, including in the neighbouring trees as it dries out and peels off. ' Could do with putting a rotavator over that" they chorus. After growing things in a certain way for decades they do not get the whole 'no till' thinking, but I will persevere. I do think the permaculture way of thinking is a really good way to approach things, we really need to step gently on the earth......literally.
The Encouraging People to be more Active course was a lot better than I thought it would be, having good tutors makes all the difference. They were not your usual sporty types who run 50 miles a day and make the rest of us feel like sloths thank goodness. It is about getting everyone to do something as it helps not only with physical well being but mental wellbeing. I know I for one feel a lot better after going out for a walk, even if I have moaned and practically had to be dragged out. I have actually started swimming in the outdoor pool in the evenings, it is painful to start off, it involves a lot of shrieking but once I'm in as long as I keep swimming it is wonderful. Swimming under the stars and moon is bliss. Anyway as far as I can remember, people aged between 19 and 64 need to do at least 150 mins exercise a week of moderate intensity, which could be 30 minutes a day for five days, OR 75 minutes vigorous intensive activity spread across the whole week. Plus muscle strength exercise 2 days a week, which is why I'm swimming in the freezing cold weather!
As for healthy weight, well I already knew I was overweight, ( or too short for my weight) but after being weighed on a body composition analyser found that my visceral fat level is healthy YESS!!! I knew there was a thin person inside :) Your visceral fat is very different from the squidgy fat you can squeeze on the outside. It wraps itself around your organs and makes you prone to heart disease, diabetes etc. It is a hidden fat that even if you are thin, can be lurking inside. I eat healthy food, vegetarian and gluten free, just much more than I burn off which may account for my results.
I am saddened by the news of Trump winning the election but can't say I'm surprised, after Brexit, nothing surprises me. Michael Moore who predicted the win months ago warned that people who struggle to put food on the table and roofs over their heads are desperately looking for someone who says he will listen to them and fix everything. Sadly they will be bitterly disappointed, a bit like the 350 million that was going to the NHS, yeh pigs might fly. In my opinion he is a thoroughly nasty piece of work who shouldn't be in charge of a car park, let alone a country!
Anyway, enough lecturing! The next post will be on lighter subjects I promise :) I will leave you with some photos from my week.
The deer spotted on a dawn walk, sadly we haven't seen them for days, I think they were scared off by the huge firework displays going on all around us.... and there was me thinking that living out in the country we would avoid all the fireworks!
Some photos taken at the fabulous Mount Pleasant Eco Park where the Permaculture course was held, we had the delicious vegan roast for lunch accompanied by the owner on the decks playing reggae in the cafe.
Beautiful sunset, frosty morning and the venue for other training.