Archive for the ‘Tales of Our Times’ Category

Transition Community Cafe

June 29, 2014
food preparation at Transition Community Cafe

food preparation at Transition Community Cafe

It was whilst out scavenging for vegetables for her hens, and seeing the amount of food going to waste, the idea of Transition Community Cafe came to Ann Bushell. Why not set up a community business that turns waste into a resource, and in doing so supplies delicious meals to the local community at a reasonable price?

The local Coop provided an unused building, volunteers and local businesses helped get it kitted out and up and running.

For a householder, waste is something you put in your wheelie bin, and think no more about it. For a local business, there is a cost incurred in disposal. Anything that helps cut that waste, or will take it off your hands for free, is a cost saving, and is therefore welcome.

  • an empty shop put back into use
  • food waste turned into a resource
  • healthy meals at low cost
  • revitalisation of a town centre
  • meeting place
  • recycling money within the local economy

Due to the variable nature of the ingredients, there is no fixed menu at Transition Community Cafe, it depends on what is available that day.

I have seen the amount of waste generated by food businesses, they seem to be happy to throw it away, and incur a cost in doing so, rather than take steps to reduce the waste.

I have suggested to Harris + Hoole Guildford, that left over food that would otherwise be thrown away, goes to a needy charity. This now happens, but that with a very short shelf life, still gets thrown away. Need to have offers at the end of the day. Buy a coffee and get a free savoury.

A bakery, sadly no longer in Guildford High Street, used to have a queue last half hour. Why, loaves of bread were half price.

Baker in Godalming, does buy one get one free. Far better, half price.

I do not know if they still do, Food For Thought in Covent Garden, used to give their scones and flapjacks to late customers to take away.

A deprived area like Aldershot, empty boarded-up units and fast food joints, poor diet, obesity. It cries out for a community venture like Transition Community Cafe, which also recycles money within the local community.

There is a cost to local councils in waste. It is therefore in their interest to support community ventures such as Transition Community Cafe.

Transition Community Cafe opened June 2013. Between the beginning of June and the end of September 2013 the project achieved the following:

  • Surplus food acquired and kept from landfill – approx 100 kilos/week
  • Food cooked and sold in the cafe – approx 50 kilos/week
  • Food sent for composting, or to a bio-digester or to animal feed (when it has not entered the cafe nor come into contact with animal by-products) – approx 50 kilos/week

Transition Community Cafe is located in Fishguard in Wales. It was a Transition Bro Gwaun community initiative.

Transition Community Cafe is an excellent example of collaborative commons, sharing economy in action.

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The Matlocks and the Terrible Thing

April 7, 2014

WynnAlice had a dream, six moons in the planning, six moons in the walking, she was to set off from the town that was not too big, not too small, and walk from town to village, village to town, telling tales, collecting tales, all to be writ in the great book, Tales of Our Times, a book of 13 chapters and 13 copies, there being 13 moons in a year.

A sojourn in Derbyshire. From The Matlocks to Chesterfield.

The Matlock Tree Group rescue trees hanging precariously onto thin limestone soils and replant. Everywhere they can, they plant trees.

The Matlock Tree Group started when local schoolchildren cleared a patch for a vegetable garden and dumped unwanted ash trees in a skip. The tree group rescued the ash trees and replanted them.

The local community support a local farmer, agreeing to buy a few of his lambs paying a better price than he would get if he took the lambs to market. They also hand feed orphaned lambs, rejected by their mothers or pushed out by greedy siblings.

Amazing how local planners can never find grounds to stop unwanted development, and yet local people who they supposedly are paid to serve, can always find many grounds.

In Chesterfield, all the schools have an allotment.

Our narrator is working on a new book, Flip Flop.

Based partly on true stories of the many people today who are already living their lives in a way that makes the world a better place to live in, Flip Flop seeks to give us a glimpse of a very different world; a world where debt is unknown, a world where people’s access to land and a home is their birthright, and where each and every child born is wanted, loved, and knows their purpose.

It was hoped to fund Flip Flop through crowd funding, but unfortunately it failed to reach its crowd funding target on sponsume. One third was raised, 40% if count those who paid direct to the author to avoid charges.

A big question mark on the many transition groups visited. Had they all chipped in, the target would have easily have been met, and they would have all benefited when Flip Flop was published.

Flip Flop will now be published in serial form on leanpub as an e-book. Everyone who pays to download leanpub, will receive Flip Flop chapter by chapter, until they have the complete book through regular updates. This has the advantages for both reader and author, and the author can get feedback and interact with the readers as the books is being written.

This is how all the classics were published. They they were first serialised in magazines, then published as a book.

Once the funds are raised, Flip Flop will be published as a paperback.

Contrast the vision of the future envisaged in Flip Flop with The Country Formerly Known as London.

With 100 advance orders, there is the possibility of Tales of Our Times being published as a paperback.

Our narrator will soon be touring the country. Dates have been fixed, but should you wish to host a story teller, please get in touch.

Schumacher storytelling

March 31, 2014
ideas that come to us in the middle of the night are always the best

ideas that come to us in the middle of the night are always the best

In a half sleep, he dreams of better worlds,
And dreaming hears thee still.

— Coleridge

Following a dream, six moons in the planning, six moons in the walking, WynnAlice set off from the town that was not too big, not too small, collecting tales, telling tales, writ in the great book, Tales of Our Times, a book of 13 chapters and 13 copies, there being 13 moons in a year.

But how did it all begin?

Invited to Schumacher College to tell a few tales, our narrator tells of how it all began …

Sound quality is unfortunately very poor.

Flip Flop is a new book in the offing. Unfortunately it failed to reach its crowd funding target on sponsume. One third was raised, 40% if count those who paid direct to the author to avoid charges.

Flip Flop will now be published in serial form on leanpub as an e-book. Everyone who pays to download leanpub, will receive Flip Flop chapter by chapter, until they have the complete book through regular updates. This has the advantages for both reader and author, and the author can get feedback and interact with the readers as the books is being written.

This is how all the classics were published. They they were first serialised in magazines, then published as a book.

Once the funds are raised, Flip Flop will be published as a paperback.

Contrast the vision of the future envisaged in Flip Flop with The Country Formerly Known as London.

With 100 advance orders, there is the possibility of Tales of Our Times being published as a paperback.

A Little Bit of Paradise

March 30, 2014

WynnAlice had a dream, she was to walk the length and breadth of England, telling tales, collecting tales, six moons in the planning, six moons in the walking, she set out from the town that was not too big and not too small. The tales she writ in a great book, Tales of Our Times, a book of 13 chapters and 13 copies, there being 13 moons in a year.

We catch up with WynnAlice as she sets off from Nottingham to Derbyshire.

The good folk of Derby brewed their own beers, until Bass the Transport Man found there was more money to be made brewing than transporting beer, and set up his own brewery in Burton-on-Trent, famed for its ideal water for beer making, and put the brewers in Derby out of business.

Derby is too dependent on a few large employers.

Once a market town, Derby needs to reclaim its status as a market town, with a real market.

Creating a forest garden in a school with the help of the children. To be replicated in more schools, not just in Derby, but across the country.

Our narrator is working on a new book, Flip Flop, but she needs your help to make it possible.

Based partly on true stories of the many people today who are already living their lives in a way that makes the world a better place to live in, Flip Flop seeks to give us a glimpse of a very different world; a world where debt is unknown, a world where people’s access to land and a home is their birthright, and where each and every child born is wanted, loved, and knows their purpose.

Please sponsor, please spread the word, tweet on twitter, share on facebook, tell all your friends.

If everyone who follows this blog, contributes something, spreads the word, the deadline will be met and the book published.

If every transition group sponsored and shared, if they asked all their supporters to do the same, we would see the crowd funding for Flip Flop many times oversubscribed.

Our narrator is rapidly running out of time, with less than a day left to raise the money to make publication possible.

A Trip in the City of Caves

March 29, 2014

WynnAlice had a dream, walk from village to town, town to village, collecting tales, telling tales. Six moons in the planning, six moons in the walking. The tales collected in a great book, Tales of Our Times, a book of 13 chapters and 13 copies.

Nottingham, a city of caves and lace, and Robin Hood.

Old Jerusalem, the oldest pub in England?

Need help in the garden? Make use of the local time-share scheme or share the garden, share the produce.

If people hoard money, the system breaks down, money has to flow.

Trust is vital in a Gift Economy.

Too large a group, and people do not know each other. If, a group is too large, spin off and form a new group with a wide range of skills.

Networks. The people in the group have the skills to make the group possible, the group brings together those with the skills. Each group can support each other.

Our narrator is working on a new book, Flip Flop, but she needs your help to make it possible.

Based partly on true stories of the many people today who are already living their lives in a way that makes the world a better place to live in, Flip Flop seeks to give us a glimpse of a very different world; a world where debt is unknown, a world where people’s access to land and a home is their birthright, and where each and every child born is wanted, loved, and knows their purpose.

Please sponsor, please spread the word, tweet on twitter, share on facebook, tell all your friends.

If everyone who follows this blog, contributes something, spreads the word, the deadline will be met and the book published.

If every transition group sponsored and shared, if they asked all their supporters to do the same, we would see the crowd funding for Flip Flop many times oversubscribed.

She is rapidly running out of time, with less than two days left to raise the money to make publication possible.

The Jewel in the Centre of the Land

March 27, 2014

When we last left WynnAlice she was passing through Cambridge.

Part way through her epic journey, six moons walking through England telling tales, collecting tales, all re-told in a great book, Tales of Our Times, a great book of thirteen chapters, thirteen copies, all as a result of a dream.

And as we all know from Santiago in The Alchemist, the way to adventure, is to follow our dreams.

Telling tales to gathered children, and what did they find, people having fun.

A society cut off from its roots, is no more healthy than a plant cut off from its roots.

A monotonous flat landscape, where distances are perceptive, the land of monoculture, Cereal Barons,

Farming is and should be about growing food, not money.

If a community collectively own a wind turbine, that produces free electricity for the local community, surplus sold to the grid, it is more likely to be accepted, than a wind farm imposed on the locality.

If we go to a bank and say please lend me the money, I want to buy a wood, the bank in all likelihood, will say no and show you the door. If the bank says yes, it will charge us 10% interest, which we will have to pay every year, plus we will have to pay back the money we have borrowed. Money is not freely lent, that is how those who have money accrue more money. And how do we pay back the interest, let alone the money borrowed? We have to make the wood work. And how do we make a wood work? By cutting down the trees.

That in a nutshell is the problem with usury. To pay the interest, the wood has to earn more than 10%. In a finite world, that is clearly infeasible, a growth rate in excess of 10%. The wood will either have to go into debt, and eventually be repossessed, or bit by bit of the wood sold off.

Our narrator Steph Bradley, has a new book in the offing, but she needs our help. She is running out of time to raise the money for the book.

Please sponsor, please spread the word, tweet on twitter, share on facebook, tell all your friends.

If everyone who follows this blog, contributes something, spreads the word, the deadline will be met and the book published.

The Place Where Bridges cross the River Cam

February 16, 2014

WynnAlice had a dream, six moons in the planning, six moons in the walking, WynnAlice set off one spring morn from the town that was not too big and not too small, to walk from town to village, village to town, telling tales, collecting tales, shod on her feet in only a par of red flip flops and wearing only what she could carry on her back, WynnAlice was to write the tales in a great book known as Tales of Our Times, a book of thirteen chapters and thirteen copies, because there are thirteen moons in a year.

WynnAlice has spent many weeks walking through the south of England, has passed through London, has caught a glimpse of Junus, The God of Transition, in the Parish Church, all that remains of the great abbey of Waltham Abbey.

WynnAlice is now on her way to Cambridge, the town where the bridge crosses the crooked river.

The God of Transition

February 15, 2014

Heeding a dream, WynnnAlice sets off from the town that was not too big, not too small, six moons in the planning, six moons in the walking, from town to village, village to town, with only a pair of red flip flops on her feet, and wearing only what she can carry on her back, WynnAlice is a weaver of tales, a collector of tales, a story teller, all to be writ in a great book, Tales of Our Times, a great book of thirteen chapters and thirteen copies, because there are thirteen moons in a year.

WynnnAlice has spent many weeks walking in the countryside, has walked the streets of London, now she heads off out of London, northwards.

As WynnnAlice heads out of London across Hampstead Heath, hints Camden may have its own local currency.

Along the Lea Valley, heading northwards out of London.

Janus, looking to the past and  the future, the God of Transition

Janus, looking to the past and the future, the God of Transition

In Waltham Abbey, the Parish Church, all that remains of the abbey, in the ceiling, Janus, the God of Transition, facing the past and the future, surrounded by signs of the Zodiac.

WynnAlice heads off towards Cambridge.

Music Silver City by Susie Ro & Ayla from the album She and I.

In and Out of the Streets of London

February 9, 2014

WynnAlice had a dream, that she was to spend six moons walking from village to town, town to village, telling tales, collecting tales, these tales to be a writ in a great book known as Tales of Our Times, a great book of thirteen chapters, thirteen copies, there being thirteen moons in a year.

Six moons in the planning, WynnAlice set out one spring morn, from the town that was not too big and not too small, wearing on her feet a pair of red flip flops from Brazil, and wearing only that which she could carry on her back.

After many weeks of walking through southern England, WynnAlice walks along the Greensand Way and finds herself in the great city of London, the modern-day Londinium.

Debussy at Zu

February 6, 2014

It’s the possibility of having a dream come true that makes life interesting. — Paulo Coelho, The Alchemist

WynnAlice had a dream, she was to spend six moons walking from village to town, town to village, collecting tales, telling tales, these tales to be collected in a great book known as Tales of Our Times, a great book of thirteen chapters and thirteen copies, there being thirteen moons in a year.

Six moons in the planning, WynnAlice set off one spring morn from the town that was not too big and not too small, shod on her feet in a pair of red flip flops from Brazil, and wearing only what she could carry on her back.

After many days walking, many adventures, many stories to be writ in the great book, WynnAlice now finds herself in Brighton, the town of two piers, only one now lies derelict.

Had WynnAlice ventured behind her Georgian resting place on the seafront of Hove, she would have found a wondrous food emporium, Taj the greengrocer.

Not far inland from Brighton Pier, North Laine, narrow streets, individual shops of character, and another wonderful food emporium, Infinity Foods, a co-operative venture of many years, where in the summer, in the adjacent streets, local folk hold street parties, and make strangers welcome.

Lewis, another town, not too big, and not too small, and like the town from whence WynnAlice came, it too its own local currency, the Lewis Pound.

Festivals are places of music, celebration, of coming together and telling tales.

More tales told, more tales collected for the great book.