Tuesday, 7 August 2012

A week helping Occupii.org @ Greeen Gathering Chepstow

As you may or may not have noticed I have been away for a week. I have been helping out with the occupii.org  live stream of the Green Gathering's Speakers and Live Bands.

The Green Gathering is an off grid green total recycling site, set on parkland to the side of Chepstow Racecourse.

It has great facilities if you have money but not so great if you don't.  In all the week was ok and the weather was often rainy, though not too cold. 

Much of my time was spent assisting the small team with maneuvering the live stream camera in and out of position, setting and re setting various bits as and when they dropped out of signal.

I did find myself getting bored of sitting around and waiting whilst one of the team had the headphones on as he monitored the camera.

We weren't next to the camera, we were situated outside  the marque where the talks and music were happening. 

 I often decided to go wandering about the site, when I got too bored of sitting in one spot. I was amazed at the people I bumped into whilst I was there. There was people I know from wales and from england who I wasn't expecting to meet, which was really nice.

As i wandered across the site i found one of my friends was running a stall that was demonstrating a technology called Bio-char Stoves. Basically these stoves are very similar to a rocket stove but with many other benefits. Among the benefits are reduced fuel consumption, Useful carbon bi product, and the designs are open source, so anyone can make these. There are more benefits but I would suggest taking a look at his site here http://www.soil-carbon-regeneration.co.uk/swansea-biochar/ 
here's a short video showing a bio char stove being used as a barbeque/hotplate.

There's nothing I enjoy more than a good tatting, when i say "Tatting" i am meaning that I collect up things usually left behind  at festivals. I went wandering for "Tat" and came across a stall called Pedellars Kitchen http://pedallerskitchen.blogspot.co.uk/ who were closing their stall decided they had some food that they weren't going to use up before they left and put the items on their cycle trailer stall with a notice.

I arrived just as a young lad with a sharp stick was going to claim the food and stab it to death. The owner saw what he was about to do and informed him that it was for people who were going to use the food and not for destroying. I spoke with the owner of the stall about my moneyless living and she then offered me some home grown potatoes, which I gratefully accepted.

The trailer they used took my attention. It turns out that their trailer is all made with mainly scrap materials, I was impressed, it looked quite professional.  My main interest was how the trailer connected to the bycycle they had to tow it.

I currently have a trailer but have yet to find a suitable way of connecting it to the bike.

I continued around the Green Gathering site and came across another stall with this sign. It reads "There is no such thing as waste, simply mis-placed resource. There is no such thing as the giver, simply The Universe Rearranging itself."

This was an uplifting thing to see that there were others that were of a like mind and care that nothing is wasted.  This was a reminder for me to keep pressing on with what I'm doing.

The Festival site was a Total recycling site and with that the areas where the recycling was deposited there was a section for Up-cycling, basically meaning things that are possibly re-usable for other things. Among the things i found in the up-cycling were a broken Ukulele, some powdered milk, hand sanitizing gel and a small cool/picnic bag. Sadly I didn't think to get pictures of the things I picked up.

Back at the speakers forum/main stage, there were talks ranging from Self sustainability to the decline of the bee in the UK. Many of the talks I found hard to watch/listen to as often they would talk about how we need money and or permission from some illusory authority for this or that and it seemed quite often the focus for discussion.    I often found myself leaving the marquee as I couldn't believe what utter tosh was coming out of some of the speakers mouths.  In the interests of diplomacy I won't name names.

Much happened over the weekend and in the interest of not boring you all completely, I'll just say that the whole thing was an experience some of which was negative but the positives I gained far outweighed the negatives which is a positive in itself.

I shall be returning to doing what I've been doing and I will update this blog and facebook, twitter etc as and when.  I'll aim to make a video for the next blog.

Anyway that's enough from me, thanks for reading.

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