I write this in London the night before setting off by coach to southern Spain, and then Morocco. In short, the planned bicycle journey through Scandinavia this year was foiled by a painful achilles tendon. I have decided to take to the ocean instead for the time being and will be crewing aboard a 65ft yacht from northern Morocco toward Trinidad in The Caribbean, hoisting sails later this week if all goes well. So the adventure continues, using the wind to fill the sails rather than my legs to push the pedals as we head southwest for the Canary Islands and Cape Verde. Wherever you are I hope you’re also getting what you want out of life on this, The Planet We Inhabit.
Well to say that the journey hasn’t gone according to plan would be an understatement. After only a few days on the road I felt a familiar unpleasant sensation coming from one of my achilles tendon. I have tried resting at several places since then but nothing seems to stop the pain recurring, and two weeks ago we unfortunately took a bus the last 60km into the town of Jokkmokk because the pain was too severe to continue cycling and had spread to my knee and foot. Since then I have been resting, contemplating, making friends and hitchhiking. But not updating the website at all! It has been extremely frustrating at times being unable to cycle or hike at all and therefore simply being stuck in various places. I’ve lost a lot of motivation. But we’re hoping to resume traveling tomorrow and journey westward into the mountains where I can strengthen my tendons, knees and ankles through hiking. Either that or damage them even more; I suppose I’ll find out soon enough. So thus far we have cycled approximately a mere 700kms. Who knows what tomorrow may bring..
It’s an incredibly satisfying feeling to create something oneself rather than just go out and find or buy one. Beginning by sawing the branch off the tree to create this spoon, I find working with wood to be a great practical way to get in touch with nature. From the first time we pointed out the branch I could visualize what it would become. And so it is!
A big thankyou to Solaris for guiding me through the creation.
Overlooking lake Volgsjön in Vilhelmina stand blocks of apartments housing people from all over the world who for the moment at least now call southern Lappland home. In one of these multicultural flats lives Solaris. The moment I was seated at the kitchen table he began pouring out stories from his life to the point my stomach eventually intervened and I interrupted him to make lunch.
Never before have I heard such fantastic tales from someone’s own experience. From Idbacka, the paradise he created together with his late wife which included ant bridges, mouse highways and quite probably (for good reason I might add) the only mosquito breeding ponds in Sweden. I was perplexed as to why anyone would want more swarms of these highly aggressive flying bloodsuckers living around them until he explained that they were food for his beloved friend the swallow. These same birds would make the return journey every year from their summer home in Vilhelmina Kommun to wherever it is they live over the northern winter; quite likely somewhere in Africa according to tracking research.
Through his escapades in Colombia where he had a bounty on his head by the local guerilla militia, Senegal where he’s hailed as an incarnation of a holy man, Egypt where he became a Christian Coptic priest, Norway where he dances like mad and is a semi-famous artist, Netherlands where he offered to marry a man from Afghanistan to prevent his deportation, to Sweden where he was a teacher in the art of fishing+hunting guiding and never tolerated lateness to class from his pupils.He’s grappled with the energy called god in many forms and is in love with a mother of three in the Phillipines. Their love can’t bloom into a live-in relationship however because no matter how hard, or soft he tries she won’t stop beating her children. So he’s now considering a move to Mexico this August.
He has even figured out that puzzle which keeps people guessing throughout their lives. Recounting the time he showed a local priest some of the flowers at Idbackan, he asked the priest what he saw. “I see the beauty of god’s creations.” replied the priest. “No, you see thousands of pussies screaming for sex, even if it’s with insects or wind.”, was his response. Life, he tells me, is simply about more life.
“All my life I’ve had only two gears; zero or full speed. When I was working in carpentry I used to run between the machines, dancing and singing. I’ve never done anything in my life for money, only for the joy. I’ve never been willing to sell my time. But luckily enough most of the things I’ve done for joy have given me money!”
To connect with or find out more about Solaris, find him on facebook at https://www.facebook.com/petrussolaris.bendtsen.5
Multinational agricultural companies are gaining more and more control over our food chain; our fundamental survival. The EU is bringing in new laws supported by these same corporations making it harder and harder for small scale farmers and individuals to legally grow their own food; a basic right.
Fast food chains like Burger King and McDonalds are opening up new stores in towns pushing out local businesses with prices that simply don’t reflect the true cost of food production and can only exist because of mass scale, industrial, pesticide based agriculture.
GM food is getting harder to identify as the same corporations, again, lobby against stricter labelling laws.
BUT don’t worry! I have come up with the solution. Get on a bike with a greenhouse attached. Move yourself whilst feeding yourself. Build one today!