It’s not yet 5am 7JUN2017. All is silent save for the rain split splotting on the roof of my digs. I am in a hut called Nonesuch and am eagerly awaiting our next serving of Greenwood (pre)Fest.
I arrived from Boston off the bus and into the care of the ever durable Mike who then took me and another traveller down ever leafier and narrower roads until all of sudden we were here amongst it all. What a place. Greenwood Fest among the very green woods. Undulating ground, rat run of tracks and little wooden cabins dotted throughout. It is rustic, spare, almost rough but comfortable and perfectly adequate for the event and no doubt the odd types that attend such a thing. It’s cold and wet and the fallen leaves from autumn have yet to completely return to the soil. They make a felted foliage mâché as they meld with the sandy mud. The wet muffles the sound of our footsteps as we tramp about the place with more than a little reverence. I am just a little in awe. Bloody hell, I am 17000km from home in an alien landscape. I know nothing about these plants, birds, soil fungi. It is nothing like the bush, yet it is the same. Canopy, mid-story, groundcovers etc. nature has her order.
Welcome! Welcome! New people to me one and all but some familiar faces. Where do I know him from, oh yes. Internet. Ah look there’s the bowl carver, and there goes the dread locked spoon carving pixie. Hey there’s the big man with the beard who transports us back to the 17th C with his green oak furniture and that other big bloke shambling past who has the nom de craft of The Spoon. To quote Peter Follansbee it’s as if the internet has come to life.
As the ranks swell and new friendships are made or old ones rekindled the dinner bell goes and we file in to feed . “Where you from?”
munch slurp chew
Sydney, Australia .
“All that way for this!?!?”
Speeches are made as last slops of soup are sopped up with bread and then it’s on. I pick up my kit and trundle off down Ampleforth dance hall to meet the newly published Barnaby Carder, known to most as Barn the Spoon. With ten others we fiddle about with birch, axe and knife and before we knew it it was dinner time. Time flies when you’re having fun. Lots to take in. And more today, starting with a bird watching walk at 0630hrs. This should help me to begin to understand the nature of this alien land.