With the #rewire now officially finished, I’ve declared two weeks of holiday before the next big project, which will be ghost writing a book for Dave Walsh. Whereas many people holiday by lounging around on a beach or by a bar, that’s the sum total of my normal lifestyle anyway so I prefer to do something more energetic. Ideally, I’d go mountaineering but the bigger hills are all rather far away from Brighton so another occupation is required.
I’ve realised recently that I don’t spend anything like as much time reading as I ought to, so books are definitely on the agenda. I’ve got The Protest Handbook by Tom Wainright, Anna Morris, Katherine Craig and Owen Greenhall, all of Garden Court Chambers fame. That’ll take care of the contemporaneous informational reading. With Councillor Christopher Hawtree’s recommendation behind it, I bought Sir Leslie Stephen’s The Playground of Europe, in which I hope to find the poetry of the mountains. If you can’t climb them, you can read about climbing them. I’ve also got myself a copy of Alexander Burns’ Journey to Bhokara, where I have been in very different but equally obscure times as the original travelogue. That should be enough to be getting on with on the reading front.
Then there’s the woodshed I built in January. I wanted to finish the film of building it but my video camera is broken so instead I’ll swing my shoulder in below an axe and chop up the logs which will inhabit it. The Boy Scouts taught me to swing an axe skillfully but it’s a joyful task that I haven’t visited in many years, so I’ll savour that. There’s an awful lot of wood to season. Later on, it’ll warm my hearth.
Then there’s the bicycle. Luckily my bike cams are not broken and the plan there was the original reason behind this blog: cycling videos. Being pretty out of shape myself, I’ll probably only manage to recover some basic leg strength rather than create some epic rides to share with the world. All the same, I’m really looking forward to getting out on two wheels and exploring the Weald once more.
There’s also quite a bit of garden management. Nature has thrown herself into our dereliction of it over the summer and the whole place is ablaze with new growths. In fact we produce so much compostable material that we’ve realised our standard issue compost bins are completely inadequate for their purpose. The work in progress that is the garden design will have to be rejigged so that there is space for three metre cubed compost compartments somewhere. That doesn’t sound like holiday fun to me so it’ll be delayed.
So that’s the shape of my holidays: bounded by literature, spun out on two wheels over long and little used lanes and marked by the delightful sound of a log splitter pealing tree trunks apart. It’s an interesting shape and deliberately blank in places, so that I can fill those times by catching up with various old friends, whom I’ve put off too frequently during the ardours of the rewire. I hope to make it over to Lewes Chess Club at some point too.
One of the best things about living in Brighton is that I’m already in a much sought after holiday destination. This privilege comes with the price of overpopulation but contains much pleasure too. I don’t need to go anywhere special to find my solace. It sits outside my door.