Saturday 29 December 2018

Barcelona Again. Three day Stop over. France to Barcelona by Rail.


So Barcelona, we head here by rail from France, Dieppe. Fun, fun, fun and some more. High speed across France, one change early on and not to fast that you get to enjoy the beautiful countryside of France which Is mostly farmed but still, It Is still beautiful and what a way to see it and meet others along the way on there journey be it for a holiday, work or the travelling kind like us.
    What a life we have Is normally the topic of conversation with others which Is always nice and drives me forward as a parent and a friend to my son's. Forgive me but I don't really keep or log all the information, I get busy parenting and speaking with others but I can recall this journey one way Is about £150 and I think it's well worth that for the ride. Each to there own. 
    So three hours into the five hour journey we are all restless. I never said travelling with children was easy, far from it. There's only so much learning and colouring you can do before the phone's are out. There I said it! Sometimes those phones come In very handy. Few more hours In and we are In Barcelona Sants Station and luck Is on my side It's dry and warm. Expect armed guys here inside and out. So with our rucksacks, tent & tarp on our backs ready for the off we google map the nearest camp away from the chaos of the city and jump on the bus and stumble across the camp site right behind a bus stop on the main road out from Barcelona towards airport I think? Right now the write up on the reviews that the beach Is one minutes walk from camp entrance Is looking doubtful? So we are all booked In for three nights basic camping with our own tent for 60 euro. Expensive but hey It's everything you need, not far from Barcelona main city and close to all transport links and the beach really Is a fast minutes walk through camp.

What a place, not at all what we are used to. Packed with motohome after motohome and people everywhere. Lucky for us a small section of this camp out of the way Is for us backpackers. A nice spot under some palm tree's In the shade. Great!! Three nights was enough here and we were ready to move on to one of our loves of life. Ibiza. This journey will again be by ferry. Barcelona to Ibiza. Which at some point will be blogged.
The beach at Camping 3 Estrellas.

Really was a nice beach.
Run Wild and Free love us Supertramps. This blog was witten up In my rough book at a table on a camp In Tangier with a coffee praying for sunshine and then put on the online blog some time later In a appartment In Morocco, Agadir. 
Life Is awesome!!!!

Fishing In France Gallery.

                                                   Lake Trout
Lake Trout.                                   

                                           Lake Bream
                                           More Bream
                                           Common Carp.
                                           Monster Common Carp for Jacy.
                                            Tea Time.
                                                   Perch & more Bream below.

Friday 28 December 2018

And Back To France ( New Haven U.K To France, Dieppe )

This Is one of our most enjoyable journey's we do, and have done many times from the U.K.
    O.K so It's about £80-£100 for a train ticket. Even with a family & friends railcard from our last location In Pembrokshire U.k to New Haven U.K to catch the Ferry over to France, Dieppe. A two minute walk from New Haven Harbour train station and your at the port. So £30-£40 get's me and the boy's on the ferry as foot passengers only with a  reserved seat each for the five hour journey which leaves at 23:00 getting us docked about 05:00 France time. Plenty of time to have a coffee and make our way to our sleepy location, Camping 2 Rivers ( my version of it's name) Camping Des 2 Rivieres.
    It's lovely, it's run by a lovely French couple who now are used to us mad bunch coming from time to time. We get the odd lift into town, port and the boy's get free sweets from them. We were even offered a onsite bungalow for one night when thunderstorms hit hard but we stayed put it our 3 man tent and suffered the battering (we love camping) they really are lovely people. It's basic but has everything we need as a tent set-up for a few weeks at a time and a massive plus is the fishing lake on-site and two rivers that run through the camp and are all welcomed to be fished. I've had my fair share of fish from there including trout(you can eat your catch it's perfect), carp (upto 35lb I believe), pike, bream, perch etc.

                                              Yeah my son pulled In this Commom Carp

We spent another two weeks here fishing everyday and night with time out to enjoy French seafood down at Dieppe Port, the local Castle which Is a amazing view point once your up top on a clear day. Be sure to venture to the Castle on Thursday/Saturday and enjoy the smallest of village market 10-15 minute walk from camp they have on. The walk In from camp Is beautiful. A rarely used railway on oneside (we walked on the tracks) and on the other two beautiful fishing lakes and not forgetting the abandoned swimming centre which Is a must. Climb the fence and go through a open window, it's a odd feeling once your In and you can almost feel and hear the enjoyment once had here as you look at the used floats and play balls left behind and the locker doors still numbered but unused. It's awesome.

From here we head to Barcelona again for a short stop over before Ibiza so I'll catch up again.

Run Wild & Free. Much love from us Supertramps.

                                                     The Swimming Centre


Friday 26 October 2018

Sacred Space Fountain Hill Summer of 2018

This place came together with a few of us helping out putting the yurt up which I can tell you Is great fun, like a team building exercise but with out the stress just a whole load of smiles, laughter and fun. After It was up the guys, myself included moved on to the next job, and the more creative magical bunch started on the inside, all adding a touch of there own each to it's soon to be charm, peacefulness just craving for individuals to become part of this sacred space at Fountain Hill.
Later In the day I asked, so who will be doing the meditation/yoga? I got a smile from Helen(you have to meet her) and a answer of some woman from workaway. Cool. She's from Australia Australia? Yeah!! Wow I thought, we are In a small village of Pembrokeshire called Hermon and everyone wants a slice of the magic of Fountain Hill.
       One afternoon, I was lay asleep on the grass beside my tent and I woken slightly to, yes the workaway pulling up and setting up camp next to me! Yes I thought, it's all coming together now. Over the next couple of days it came together, people were enjoying the sacred space, a space many individuals had put together. It felt nice just to be a small part of this, like I was responsible for a small input to other peoples happiness. Myself, I don't really do classes, groups or whatever but I did sneak In for some pictures and alone time. I enjoyed a couple of sneaky sessions of meditation/mindfulness just ME! It takes a few minutes and looking up at the clear section of the roof to blue skies and the odd pure white cloud like giant floating cotton wool and experiencing the silence, you were there lost In it's magic, like the whole world was yours In one space.
    Can I keep saying it? It's the magic of Fountain Hill. Ha!! Just did. Fuck It! I love It!

Tuesday 2 October 2018

The Travelling Recipe: Chocolate Courgette Cake

The pressure was on, me. It was all for fun but really wanted to follow a traditional Czech Mum's recipe. Yes by the wonderful use of social media Klara from Fountain Hill contacted her Mother In Czech and the Courgette recipe was sent over to us here In Hermon U.K for me to follow and now make with Klara hovering In the background eating the mix as it is put together saying "I can't wait to taste Mum's cake again" again no pressure I thought with a smile thinking I really hope it turns out. Like most of the residence at Fountain Hill Klara has a beautiful presence, somewhat mystical and magical and full of stories, advice and some funny quirks, one being a yearly binge on crab sticks. I know.

    So the recipe was doubled and put together In a bowl with the chocolate topping set aside ready. Yes, courgette and chocolate, a new experience for me. We decided a tray bake so we could make enough and cut into equal amounts for the community and as a little extra I was using the recipe but adding some of my own input to create a lemon drizzle courgette cake, this would be made In a 2lb loaf tin and again for the community.  And now with all the ingredients prepared and spooned into the trays the tin Is was time to create a small steam bath at the bottom of the oven and now bake. At this time it was 1am, I never sleep so this is normal for me to be awake doing something wherever I am. A hour went by and the smell was incredible, 2am Klara Is taking the puppy dog Padfoot out for a wee just as the cake was out and cooled ready to eat just by chance, I think someone was waiting. The verdict was In, wow it taste like Mum's. YES!! Later that day the community enjoyed Klara's Mum's recipe of Chocolate Courgette Cake and my Lemon Drizzle Courgette Cake. It really was amazing.  Even more so the courgettes were picked by me from the garden's poly tunnel.  Community of Fountain Hill's magic strikes again.

Sunday 19 August 2018

Lemon Curd for the Community at Fountain Hill.

4 lemons & zest
2 cups caster sugar
1/4 cup of butter
3 eggs + a yolk

So easy this and children love tasting it along the way and the colour. Slowly disolve the sugar in the 4 juiced lemons, the zest of the lemons & butter in a bowl over a pan of simmering water as you would melt chocolate. (dont let simmering water touch the bowl) just how I do it.
   When the sugar disolved whisk eggs In slowly and cook with same method for about 15-18 minutes (I never let it bubble) stir as you go. Allow the lemon curd to cool and fill your jars and eat some.

Saturday 18 August 2018

Community Baking with Children, Simple Fun Scones. There Own Recipe.

Fruit & Plain Scones
2 cups of self raising flour
pinch of salt
1/2 cup of butter
1/2 cup caster sugar
1/2 cup of milk
1/2 cup of sultanas
The Fun Bit
Crumb together 2 cups of flour, pinch of salt and butter. Add sugar and bring together to form a soft sticky dough using the milk(save a little for top of scones later) Roll out dough and cut 2cm thick circles and place on a well floured baking tray. Preheat oven 180, milk wash scones and then bake for 15-18 minutes. Cool on a rack then dust with icing sugar.

Friday 3 August 2018

Fountain Hill: The Simple Things we forget!

Planting & harvesting at the Allotment
In Manchester.
The one thing here at Fountain Hill which Is so simple really and having give up on let's say "normal society life" me and the boys have really started to enjoy meal times on a whole new level, almost like a new experience. Sounds odd doesn't it?, well to me it does. How can meal times be a new experience? You cook, you eat you've had your meal. Let me explain.
We started our permanent journey after giving up everything and living from our rucksacks with a trip up to Manchester "Fire Station Square Pottery" our Aunty & Uncles (Ang & Ian) place. There home Is a pottery, yeah it's very cool, not as cool as them though. One of them, you'd have to meet them. So it came round to meal time, I sat round the table drinking coffee, the boys helped Ang collect some of the food to be enjoyed from the allotment and then prepared and cooked the meal and set the table, Ian came back and fourth from the pottery helping and joining In with the conversations then the meal was ready. All of us sat together and enjoyed a lovely meal, chatted about the food, chatted about new adventures, new experiences and even delve into the past a little. There was no rush, it was a happy table. It felt strange to me there was no rushing from work to get boys from school "society's prison of control for children" to get home to have time to prepare tea and cook it before it was time to prepare for the next day.
       "We have also met the amazingly good looking giant Oliver Mackay he is a God among men". Sorry guys It's me again Gav, Olly part of Fountain Hill community and Magical Youth crew rudely came into my room disturbed me gave me my post and took over the blog and had his say on himself as per usual. He has his youth so we have a continuous banter, he assumes he is taller, more good looking, better with the ladies and stronger. Yeah he is taller I'll give him that. Anyway enough about Olly. He's a great a lad, Coban and Jacy my son's think he's so much cooler than Dad. Where the f@&k was I?
Local Fish Market In Dieppe France
Meal Times here at our Tent Home In
 So we found ourselves back In the beautiful place of North France, Normandy camping on a camp on a nature reserve. Stunning place. I continued our beautiful meal times by heading down to the local markets picking up local food such as fish and veg and preparing the meal and cooking it with my boys. Hey I still had back up when I couldn't be bothered, lads I'm not in the mood today there's backup super noodles In the bag. Super noodles are ace. After some two and a half months In France we were due to travel back to Fountain Hill but this time we were staying for three months plus. We have no time scale which is another thing we are getting used to.
Now we find ourselves back at the magic. Jumped straight In where we left off from our previous time at Fountain Hill.

Harvesting Day at Fountain Hill

    Meal times here are awesome. I've seen a little bit of tension at meal times but when your cooking for fifteen, eighteen and twenty some people at a time that's allowed with children running through Is It ready yet, I'm starving I'm going to die. It's great to watch and be part of.  Food is collected from the poly tunnel and gardens and brought to the kitchen, recipes are looked over or sometimes it's off the top of our heads, a count of people Is done and wrote on In chalk on the chalk wall near the cooker so we know who's here. It's a vegetarian kitchen here and the smells and flavours are insane. So it's normally about six o'clock In the evening, a shout out from the kitchen Is made "foods done" and from person to person it gets round to everyone and within minutes we are helping ourselves to the food and taking a seat and this where meal time becomes like no other, feels kind of special to be part of, feels like as a child myself where was this time In my life, I don't remember times like this unless it was a Christmas meal or a meal out to some so called nice restaurant which was always really uncomfortable. Even at a young age I could remember the tension, like no one got on really or couldn't accept certain people. Would always hope my aunty was coming down to throw a bit of madness In and talk about something positive, constructive and interesting to me which seemed to be normal from this random get together.
       So this what meal times means to me and the boys here, people from all walks of life, at any age can all sit together and enjoy good food. We can praise the food, guess the ingredients, hey we can even say we think it needs a little more of this and that or as simple as I don't like it, it all makes great conversation round the table. We make plans, people offer advice. We agree and disagree. Jokes are made and there is a abundance of laughter from all most of the time, it feels special, like you belong to part of this magic community, something me and the boys have not experienced and I think we will take this away with us where ever we end up In our journey through life. I always say it's the simple things and who new a meal could have so much effect on us. But it's not just a meal here and again I can only describe it as The Magic of Fountain Hill.
Jacy Helping out around the Gardens
Food Preparation

If anyone does take the time out to read my up and coming stuff on the blog, thank you! I do go on and I'm unsure on my writing ability but hey this Is me and my boy's life's. It's real and it's happening now! Thank again.
Poly Tunnel Is full of Life

Tuesday 31 July 2018

The Magic of Fountain Hill & Magical Youth.

So, the magic of Fountain Hill community. The boys and me had four days at Fountain Hill Farm at the end of  March to meet the guys here and discuss my role when we return In June for three to four months. I don't think this went to plan over the four days for all the right reasons, we fell In love with the place and the people here and somehow just fitted In and got on with the upkeep of the place, helped with cooking for a community and the growing of food soon to be harvested on my return. You would find It hard not to feel welcomed at Fountain Hill It really is special.
     Let me tell you quick how I came to be here. So Facebook, yeah Facebook again. I seen someone post and comment on a old post needing help, volunteers around a farm called Fountain Hill (just the name had me hooked) for accommodation and meal provided, so a quick Google and the place looked great but I was to late for 2017. So I got in touch told them my plans and I'd love to help. O.k it was a year away and they told me to keep In contact and come up In 2018 for four days to see If It could work. I kept to my word, Fountain Hill kept to there's and here we are I've been back here well over a month and for two of those weeks so far I've been left here to look over land, food growing and harvesting, cats to look after and my favorite tasks of all the pond and the upkeep of the surrounding nature. For example letting nature grow but just keeping a eye and tidying it up so the farm can be productive and not completely took over by nature, Oh and I was asked to over see the tree house building with the seven children here at the time. All boys, I know chaos, but what a brilliant task for me who refuses to grow up. Why was I needed, well the guys here go across the U.K to festivals with there theater act, circus skills, children's area and from what I can see a whole lot more of great stuff which I will see or hear about one day soon.
    So back to the discussion we were meant to have about my role, hours I would do, what boys would do. Yeah we sat outside and had a talk but I'm not here for set hours I piped up , write me a list of things and I will see stuff myself  to do. I was just happy with this opportunity I knew I'd be happy plodding along all day doing stuff on the land, fixing and building stuff, being In the kitchen helping or preparing meals also fitting In being a parent to the lads while they run wild and free.
    There's going to be so many things I can write about our time here. There are so many things I've missed In this short write up but these are mine and my boys personal memories.

Keep up with the blog, I personally think If I keep going with it and more write up's as well as pictures It could be very interesting. The guys are back from the first festival today so let's see what happens next for Fountain Hill. It's magic you know.

Double yolk... Yeah!!!!!!!!
Tree House Construction Site

Helping Dad.

I cut and styled my son's hair.... First time ever!!

Harvesting with the youngest.

New Chicks of 2018

Tom cat proud of his land.

Beautiful colors.

Camp fire with our airbnb guest from Holland. Dorianne. She was lovely.