Georgiana and I leave Liskeard in the pouring rain, which doesn’t let up till about 4pm. It ranges from drizzle to downpour and our layers of waterproof clothing are slowly but surely penetrated as the day progresses.
Our attempts to stop at a pub for lunch are thwarted; the only inn in the village of Duloe closed down six months ago, and we eat crisps and cake, and Georgina tries a meat pie, from the post office store, crouching in a well built stone bus shelter.
Our spirits are good though and we talk of herbs and herbalists, about men and about families, and the things women talk about when they are left to their own devices, and Georgiana tells her tale of Collapse where she takes four real life scenarios from history, and tells two positive and two negative stories of how civilisations did or didn’t make it through a life threatening challenge. It is a performance piece not yet fully formed and feels rather like an uncut diamond which is half polished and gleaming and half still laden with potential.
My favourite part is when she takes on the role of the Australian bikini clad Jean, and complete with outrageous accent, proceeds to give a beautiful cameo of a business as usual scenario. If you are curious about Georgiana’s work http://www.georgiana.net this is her website. Jean’s message?
Why? Well, because if they hadn’t have let the rabbits into Australia they wouldn’t have needed to import foxes too, and if they hadn’t done this the little native Australian mammals wouldn’t have been killed off. She is very convincing is Jean, till you hear her advocate a buy –buy- buy solution to all our problems!
By late afternoon, full of tales and good conversation, Georgiana and I reach the lanes that will take us the final few miles into Lostwithiel, my favourite Cornish town, and the sun comes out. By the time we meet Anne Marie Culthane, partner Joe, and baby Finn, we have completely dried out and are sun kissed warm, with only the sodden contents of our rucksacks left to remind us of our wet ordeal.
Over a delicious supper of stir fry fresh from the garden and the most gorgeous courgette and apple cake ever we talk, and hear about Abundance, the wonderfully successful fruit sharing project Anne Marie started in Sheffield, famed throughout the country, and just started up here in the Fowey valley.
Georgiana teaches us a silly party game called Cake Face and we giggle over the funny expressions and munch on more courgette cake. Over the washing up Joe tells us about the Forum, Lostwithiel’s alternative council that he might be asked to be the arts representative on. Anne Marie and Joe wonder if this is a group that might be a good vehicle for transition issues.
As I get ready for bed I am aware that this journey of mine is almost over; it is the final stage. I will be home in Totnes in a matter of days now.