Saturday, 25 April 2009

Memory from first day climbing in Skye.

High Energy

On Sgur nan Gillean
- after an epic day.
Late evening sun sinking
as we stare
at two small specks
circling on a thermal
far below.
Slowly - they rise and grow.
Eventually level with us,
every feather clear.
We share a moment
in this high place.
Majestic birds
in their elements of rock and air.
Spellbound, we watch
as the rising air lifts them higher.
Round and round they spiral
shrinking as they soar
until lost from view.
A memory stored.
This poem was inspired by the wee photograph of me sitting on the summit of Sgurr nan Gillean (Peak of the young men - in English), at the side of this blog. Although that picture was actually my second trip up that mountain, looking at the picture reminded me of the amazing first day I spent climbing on Skye.
It was a bit of an epic; we had attempted to climb this mountain via a route known as Pinnacle Ridge. We had no actual climbing gear as such and intended free climbing it. Saves carrying lots of heavy gear. However, after a few fraught attempts at a particularly tricky descent between a pair of the aforementioned pinnacles we retreated and chose another route. This was a long detour and we eventually went up the west ridge and arrived at the summit late in the evening. It was amazing standing on the top, drained from our exertions and the effects of the adrenalin, basking in the glow of the setting sun. Then I noticed the small dots circling far below in the corrie. A beautiful pair of Golden Eagles; we felt we could almost lean out and touch them as they slowly ascended past our perch on the small summit platform of this mountain.
That revived us for the descent and slog back to the pub. We were so dehydrated we actually bought shandies but don't tell anyone.
I wonder where the other two guys I was with are now. I remember one was called Bernie and he was a really funny man with a very tolerant wife. He was a bit older than me, but then I was only 18. The other chap, I never saw again after that trip, he was ex army and had been invalided out after the charge pack for the gun of a Chieftan tank exploded in his hand and blew him clean out of the tank. Luckily the hatch was open. He had been seriously injured but the only long term damage was that he limped a bit and had lost an eye! A miracle he had survived at all though.
Really I have been very lucky when I look back, and have many wonderful memories.

Sunday, 19 April 2009

Moments in Time ... 37 Years Apart.

Friday at work, a routine request. 
A company name, long forgotten.
I catch my breath.....
he would be 55 now.
One year older: he had left school; had a job; had money.
A young tiger on rock.
Conquistador Crack on a late summer evening,
every muscle and nerve straining I try to match his ease and grace.
Later that year, a fall on ice.
Showers of sparks illuminating the way as he slammed into rock.
Then gone into the night. 
.... "Thats ok", I say, "same stuff, just another manufacturer".

Friday, 10 April 2009

Diary Techniques

A while back I was reading a bit about professional journaling and reflective practice. This led me to Tristine Rainer's book, "The New Diary" and a book by Jennifer Moon on reflective journaling. Both books encouraged me to use diary writing as a means of expressing myself and gaining a better understanding of who I was and how I perceived the world around me. This was a process that started with my enrolment on a series of cognitive behavioural sessions last year. I was starting to re-build my confidence and find ways to tackle the anxiety and panic attacks that were blighting my life. A technique mentioned in these books was the use of intuitive writing. A method of by-passing left brain cognitive processing and relying more on the nebulous right brain. I should try this more often and develop this way of recording my experiences. It is a good way of cutting through the logical censoring of what I write.
Here are a couple of examples from earlier this year.

2nd February 2009

Going home light in sky, first time.
Farm road geese calling.
Many - how many? A sky full.
Stretching across the sky silhouettes.
Row upon row all calling.
4000? 5000? Going home
like Gullane, just like home.

4th February 2009

Overcast rain puddles.
Kamikaze girl in pink - lives on.
Umbrella day, heavy spray,
a surprise - 3 waxwings on rose hips.
A wave, security guard,
Each morning the journey.

5th February 2009

Whiteness of snow, new land
quieter, slower all around.
Good to walk this day, joking with postman,
How many journey's like this to do
What then I wonder

23rd February 2009

Appearing like magic - rooks, many rooks
all in a line heading where?
On a mission, they know the way.
On and on they come in the fading light - surely that must be all
but no, here are more and still they come.
A mystery, another unique moment on the larger journey.
For them, for me.

Thursday, 9 April 2009

Happy Easter

Well it's been busy, we are a bit short of staff this week and it is challenging to say the least.  Easter holiday weekend but I'm working on the Friday and part of the weekend, but I will escape for all day Sunday. The joys of working in a hospital.
In just over 3 weeks I have 2 weeks and 2 days of leave - that will be so good.  Hope the weather is nice. I want to get out in my canoe and have some great days on the water. Good for the soul.  Can you spot the canoe in the picture above? (clue - it's not on the water).

Sunday, 5 April 2009

The Journey

Awoke to find a better day weather wise but my mind filled with anxieties about work on Monday and my health. Couldn't seem to reach a more positive place.  So I went on a journey to get some advice and now I feel a whole lot better.
I still need to put it all into practice . Can I let the drama unfold and avoid getting caught up in it? Can I keep my mind focussed on where I want to be and let it all happen?
Funnily enough I was looking at some other blogs, using the next blog option, and came across one from a Yorkshire lass. She had some quotes on her blog that resonated with what I had found while journeying in a shamanic state of consciousness earlier today.  I have not used the technique for a while - find it difficult to quieten my mind to attain the necessary state since returning to work.
Any way the result is I am in a better frame of mind for today and hopefully for next week and beyond.  
I've been reading a book on Transurfing,  the techniques of which I am trying to incorporate into my life.  If it works it should help transform the way I perceive my world.  I have been told by some that it is just the law of attraction in another guise.  Can't get away from the law of attraction these days it seems!

Saturday, 4 April 2009

Still a wet Saturday

Have I ever wondered why I can't focus?
So what conclusion was drawn?
I have a frantic imagination with a strongly visual way of perceiving the world.  That is why I have been working on developing diary/journaling techniques to slow my thought processes down and get time to appreciate what I am feeling.
In this way I hope to develop a better understanding of who I am and how I can develop myself and my life experience.  To find harmony and peace beyond the wreckage of the mental trauma's I have been exposed to. 
( I used to draw and paint as you can see, but my mind will not rest long enough to create images such as these any longer.  I am not playing my flute or bass guitar).
Is it working?
I don't know, I really don't.  I feel at times I make a step forward but the old ways are so ingrained I probably can't see a clear path out.
As NLP devotees say " If you do something and don't like the results try something different until you do."
Sounds so easy but to try living your life differently and risk great loss takes courage and perhaps I just don't have enough of that any more.
Maybe I'll look out some old photo transparencies tonight and look into my past and just maybe get a clue to where my future might lie.

Saturday - rain.

Well it is not great weather for biking. So I will enter a couple of wee poems I have been meaning to record here.

Stress busting today
library erotica
Long hair all in black

Tattooed and dark hair
for me unattainable
she would taste so sweet

Burning as in hell
A long dark night of my soul
the sickness fights back

XT 600
Winding road mile upon mile
A meditation

Equinox today
We walk,Loch Maree in sunshine
Magic all around.

As if by magic
rooks on a mission flying
directly, somewhere

Sad little bastard
ranting and raving at me
Inspiring contempt

Friday, 3 April 2009

Friday Night

What a hell of a day - everything that could go wrong at work did, and I was hoping to start catching up today!! Not a snowball's chance in hell!
Glad it's Friday night, I've had a beer and now I can start to try and unwind.  It was a beautiful day outside today which made it all seem worse.  I hope the weather is better than forecast and I can go for a blast on my motorcycle tomorrow; that usually brings me back to life again.  There must be a better way to live but my job pays the bills and they don't seem to get any smaller or less frequent.
Major lifestyle change may be called for if I can only make the leap.  But where to?