January 16, 2009

The Longest Night…The Longest Fire…

21st / 22nd December

sunsetfire

Dusk arrived at 4.00pm as we lit the bonfire and made a toast to the start of the Winter Season, to the sun and the lighter days ahead.
drawingclub

Thanks to everyone who celebrated: three lads from the estate nearby who suggested building skate ramps on site, local ‘fans’ Frank & Sonia, Andy and his kids “this is the future!”, Chen, Sue and Dave who made a long journey with food offerings, members of Drawing Club, including Uchen and Andro who made portraits and panoramas using ink and willow charcoal in the glow of the fire and the Sainsburys distribution centre car park guards working the early hours…

seb_solstice_drawing_web

Somehow, it was the mildest of winter nights…felt like summer compared to the past frozen days. The street lamps on Sewardstone Road were switched off , our wish come true – a real off grid experience! The hours sped by during which the horse trailer became a cosy space for solstice cake and mulled wine and a spontaneous ‘private viewing’ of Sebastian’s panoramic drawing of the night gathering(pictured above).

solstice-fire-blaze

The millstone fire kept a blaze, fueled by palette wood.

Dave, Magdalena and Beatha set the rhythm on a dance floor of palettes as Shaun set the peddle pace with high energy bike powered tunes. Amy persevered with the storm kettle at the tea and coffee bar, Ella wove the beginnings of a willow basket whilst Tomimi shared many thoughts about the off grid situation, about necessity of working with natural resources and drawing on ancient traditions. As the mood changed in the early hours, Brendan and Sherilee found the perfect floral ‘camouflage’ fabric to cover the bender and we lit the chimnea inside, while Nick tended the bonfire outside…

bender

The energy and spirits sparked right into the dawn…watching the sun rise around the bonfire at breakfast. Winter has never felt so good.

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