Since my last blog a lot has happened! We are sadly approaching the end of our journey together and have been organising some aspects of our exciting launch party on the 31st of March. But of course we have had more opportunities for some exciting, new experiences in the shape of a planting day, and meeting the very interesting David Lindo, The Urban Birder.
Firstly we met at the Sumner Estate, behind the Tate. We decided that the endless fun from the first gardening day, with Peter Graal, couldn’t end. Therefore we joined him on the tree planting, taking place at the Thank Goodness for Trees event. On arrival, I was very impressed with the efforts made by the team (Better Bankside and BOST), a intimate, and friendly set up, of amazing cupcakes, free window boxes for locals, tree decorating, and of course tree planting. In true Pioneer style we got a hand straight in the dirt, and collectively planted a beautiful tree. Of course not in the most professional way, but good fun as always. We then helped prune, and tidy the garden flower beds, and decorate branches. With a nice cupcake break in between, its only fair? The day was fairly short, and to be fair the event wasn’t as busy as I felt it deserved, but it was yet another fun day, proving again the growing sense of community in Southwark. I do have to say another thank you to Peter, for some good fun, and hands on activity, which is always great.
The next session we embarked on was the event planning day, Saturday 7th March, at the building centre. There we meet Peter Murray, who helped us on the event details, and gave us a small tour of the building and some background information on London and changes being made. We all meet in the morning, and after long discussion made some final decisions on our event. Unfortunately the day had a dark cloud hanging over it in the sense that our journey is coming to a close. However the excitement of our event party was keeping us going. Peter was a great help, using his many years in lecturing and holding events to advise us on important decisions. We were shown a huge 3d-platform map, an amazing model of the whole of London. Fascinatingly revealing exactly how many changes have and will occur in our city. Of course Miguel managed to snap a piece of the map, however Peter reassured us it wasn’t the first time it had happened, lucky for Miguel. Having been shown the new architecture building we parted ways. Today’s was important for our event, but left us all feeling a bit sad I think, of course it wasn’t going to last forever, but thanks to Ruby, and the team I just don’t want it to end!
However we weren’t completely finished, we then meet on Sunday the 8th at the Tate Modern for our last session with the Urban Birder, David Lindo. Once the whole team had arrived Mr Lindo began on his bird learning experience. And it most definitely was an experience. I found the day very interesting, we didn’t just learn about types of bird, but sounds, colours, habitats, lifestyle habits, and stories on a wide range of birds. David had completely different radar to all of us, in the sense he was tuned into the bird’s sounds and movements the whole time. We worked our way from the Tate community garden, through to Sumner Street, the Better Bankside building, through to the Copperfield churchyard. Throughout the walk I felt constantly aware of my surroundings and was awakened to exactly how much wildlife surrounded us. David made a good point in that you don’t have to leave the city to see birds, and it’s so true. Once we had reached the churchyard our walk finished. But the small introduction to Birding that David gave us really inspired me, and again showing exactly how many opportunities there are out there in all fields of work. I may not necessarily want to start birding as a career, but that isn’t important, just looking around you, and being aware, is what I gathered being a birder is all about. Anyone can look up and enjoy nature, and David’s session taught me that. It was yet another fun, and interesting day, making it even harder to say goodbye to my amazing team.
Over the past six months, I have experienced something extraordinary. I gained some lovely new friends, learned loads of new skills, experienced a wide range of careers, hobbies, skills, and most of all have changed my life, using the knowledge I have gained. When coming in to this project I thought I would possibly experience something new, and have some fun, but it has meant so much more to me. Being one of the four pioneers has made me proud. I had no idea in this short space of time I would experience, film making, radio production, interviewing lots of new and interesting people, illustrating, gardening, birding, event planning, blogging, web design, and learning so many life stories, and career path information. But I have and I couldn’t have asked for a better opportunity to experience so much. I’m very grateful to Ruby, who throughout this process has been our motivating, good fun, hard working, well-organised, and overall lovely mentor, and of course everyone involved that have added to my experience.
Us pioneers are four of a kind.
See you at the launch……..