With 30 days counting down until I cycle around England it’s time to be honest about how much I need to learn about biking.
I’ve never done any long journeys on a bike before. In fact the most I ever did in one day was about 7 miles, once, when I was 19. I’m an ambler and don’t much like cycling if it involves effort. I’ve never fixed a puncture, changed a wheel or done anything other than adjust the seat.
Today for the first time I put a panier rack (I hope correctly) on the bike that was kindly lent to me for the trip by my friend Kimlin. After a (very) brief test ride my hands feel they’ve been vibrated by a road drill and I begin to seriously suspect my lady bits will not cope with hours of being bashed by a saddle without suspension.
I’ve found a local group that I hope will let me volunteer fixing bikes in exchange for teaching me and I’ll be spending the next month ranging further afield on the bike to try and get my biking muscles used to it.
At this point donning the padded Lycra shorts I got in a charity shop would seem like a bad joke, but perhaps before the month is up I will learn to love the bike and see myself as a cyclist. If not, I’ve then got an intense month of cycling around England to make me love it. Kill or cure.
You can now BUY YOUR COPY of POLLINATING CHANGE.
Please share the good news! A four month walk with over 80 people interviewed about the wonderful work they do led to this book, but more importantly so did the kindness of countless lovely people.
“An inspiring journey of the heart, body and mind.” Phil Chandler, The Barefoot Beekeeper.
From cooperatively owned energy and permaculture to blockades and meditation there is a huge range of things we can choose to do to change the culture not the climate.
“A heartfelt, uplifting and important account that reminds us to slow down and take notice of the inspiring people and places that surround us every day.” Danny Chivers, author of The No Nonsense Guide to Climate Change
We had such a great time at Wood festival this weekend! We were speaking in the Kindling tent alongside some of the wonderful people we interviewed during the tour – Al from Fossil Free Oxfordshire and Danny from BP or not BP?
Lots of children and adults made bee badges with us and came to ask about the book. We got our first sight of the book as it was delivered to the festival itself. It’s a great joy to see all the hard work finished in a little book that we can hold in our hands, thank you to everyone involved!
The probable consequences to our society and our species of ‘business as usual’ are not the future we want. But the processes of how we get from our present condition to a future we do want, happen one step at a time, by many feet in many places. Last week I met Luke, a co-founder of Change the Future in Brighton, which explores greater democratic, joint decision-making processes for change.
Luke went to Sands, one of only two democratic schools in the country. The individual children and teachers each have a vote on all aspects of the running of the school. It was this unusual school which was the foundation for his desire to start Change the Future. At it’s heart Change the Future is a way for people to organise collectively, adding their skills to work for positive change; this can be through online projects or a physical space such as the Wall of Ideas. The Wall of Ideas invited people to collaboratively explore how they would change Brighton.
Luke seems unfailingly constructive and positive, to him problems are there to be overcome. As we approach and pass the election, there are so many ways beyond a vote, through which we can bring democracy to life and change our future.
We don’t inherit the Earth from our parents, we borrow it from our children. Last week I met Max. Along with other BHASVIC students, she had arranged a lunchtime speaker event, where Green MP Caroline Lucas came to speak. The large hall was packed with well over a hundred students sitting and standing wherever they could.
With the general election just over a month away many people are still considering their vote, but Max will be unable to vote. The decisions of this government which faithlessly promised to be ‘the greenest government ever,’ and not to increase tuition fees, have radically effected Max’s future. Max volunteers for the Green Party and organises political events, hoping to make a difference.
When we cast our votes next month as adults and citizens, we will also be making a decision on behalf of all those too young to do so.
If you missed last weeks interview on Radio Woking you can catch it here.
Thank you, for everything!
After four months of walking, it was a massive relief and joy to complete the walk! :) You can see a video here and article that the local paper made.
THANK YOU so much to all the people who walked on the Buzz Tour, to all those who shared their stories with us, to all those who donated and all those who fed and sheltered us. Without all those pieces of kindness and support it would have literally been impossible. There is no way we could have done a journey like this without the daily grace, charity and kindness of others. You have all created something which exceeded my expectations in every way. I am so grateful and lucky to have met you all.
This weekend’s climate march in London drew people from lots of different parts of the Buzz Tour, it was so wonderful to be reunited. We’d love to see everyone again! So we’re going to throw a Pollination Party in Oxford on the 25th of October! We’ll be emailing everyone invites over the next couple of days so if you don’t hear from us please drop us an email – we haven’t forgotten you, it’s just hard to gather all the emails together.
We’ve started work on a book about all the amazing things from the Buzz Tour. If you walked along and would like to write about your experience please drop us an email – we didn’t get everyone’s email at the time. As we finish a draft chapter it’ll be posted online so that everyone can comment and help us make it fantastic. We hope to have the book finished by spring!
During the walk we took ten hours of great interviews and footage that we’d love to make in to a documentary. If you’d like to be involved get in touch!