The first workshop of the year. Later than normal – we all know why. A brilliant group. Vibrant and full of dynamism and energy for moving and being, projects and developments. It was so good to be out again, with others – in a landscape, with curiosity and in practice.
It’s been 2 weeks since we were up in Hebden Bridge. I remember the lead up to the weekend – so much to think about. It’s the first time for a lot of things (the planning, the risk assessments, the guidelines). But the reality, the meeting, the peopling, the sharing of (a little more distanced) space that happens – we know how to do it. It’s natural and feels good.
We checked the weather so many times, were ready to split the group so that half could work inside with me in a suitable group size of 6 people while the other half braved rain or wind with co-facilitator Katye Coe, and then to swap around at lunch time…
But the weather was fine – always blustery up on those hills behind Wainsgate Chapel – but still fair. So we decided not to split and be outside all weekend. We stayed together as a larger group. We greeted and warmed up next to the chapel. We went up onto the hills. Worked for some time in partners with eyes closed, in exploration and investigation of the landscape. We ate together and napped amongst the heather. We wandered solo, and regathered to talk about our experiences. We then walked back down the hills. And the next day we did something similar.
These are simple activities and frameworks. And after a while, an unraveling or relaxing happens – and a kind of landing is possible. I like to think that in that kind of place, there is potential to ask some questions about what feels important in that connection to landscape and nature – that a quieter answer comes out. Quieter and more embodied. And I think that is a powerful way forward into progress and change that I hope stays with participants for a while.
I’m looking forward to Epping Forest in 2 weeks time. My ambition is for something simple and spacious too. There is less things to think about this time, so I hope there’s even more time for quiet landings. I’m looking forward to it.
Here are some moments from the weekend to share…