mUD MOUNTAIN BLOG
Back in 2011, I found myself camping alone on a remote
Turkish hill. There was no power or water on the land.
It was the start of an adventure that profoundly changed
my beliefs about what is enjoyable, or possible...
Things I Miss...
It is always in the absence of a thing that we comprehend its true value. Not that I ever undervalued my life up on Mud Mountain. But some of the things I miss, or the extent to which not having them affects me, surprise me. Eight months have passed since I left. And I am slowly comprehending. How privileged I was to have a space of my own. An uncorrupted square of Gaia to play in, to be wholly and unabashedly myself.
Now I am on the road you see, and I am on borrowed land. Every day and night. Other people’s spaces. Or no one’s. It’s very different.
How sensitive I have become to noise for one thing. And how wretchedly noisy the world seems to be! Cars, trucks, grass strimmers, washing machines, road works, cement mixers, televisions, slot machines. Wherever I go, I’m assailed by a never-ending chain of mechanical and electronic pollution that seems to bother no one but myself.
And then I stumble or rumble into a forest, or a field, or grove. Birds twitter, leaves whisper. The light drips from the grass like an alien emerald energy. And I remember what I left behind.
To co-create an Eden is probably the greatest blessing a human can have. To hold a space sacred, sense the power of the trees and the breath of the land, to forge relationships with the myriad of creatures that hop and crawl and amble over the skin of our planet, to hear the messages slipping out of the forest, to feel intrinsically a valuable part of something without compromising a speck of your truth, to have a space where you gain power when you feel disempowered, or nourishment when you feel hungry, or love when you feel bereft; these things are Earth’s gift to us.
It’s so obvious now, squashed as I am in the driver’s seat of my caravan, how lucky I have been. The last five years were the best of my life. Now, as I chug along my new road, I carry that gift inside me like a precious, rare egg.
Don’t misunderstand me. I don’t want to be back on Mud Mountain. Half a year down the line, I am more certain than ever that my choice was bang on. In fact, I’m often to be found slumped on the sofa of my van, hand clapped to forehead in relief, marvelling at how I escaped.
I still wonder how my land knew what was coming, because I heard the dirt and the branches speaking many times in the year before, as if the intentions of the collective consciousness had seeped into the earth, to be sensed, and smelt and heard.
Trees communicate via subterranean fungal pathways. They warn each other of danger, share nutrients and who knows what else? For the forest, the survival of the whole is survival. Is this what I tapped into? Or the soul of the planet itself? I don’t know.
Now, as I motor back through the British Isles, I realise for the first time in a long while I am free. To speak. To write. To think. And to imagine a garden stuffed with magic. A garden where everything is valued equally, from the smallest ant to the tallest tree. A garden of possibility and choice. A garden created using an amalgam of my power and that of the planet. Because the one thing Mud Mountain taught me which has changed my world is that we are all gods and goddesses. We are powerful. We are amazing. And we could change the direction of this sorry world in years, if enough of us only realised it and acted on it.
So here they are: Ten things I miss most about that Other life. My life on a 2500 m2 hill, all alone and off-grid in a mud home. I miss so many more things than this of course, but to list them would take forever.
The Ten Things I Miss Most About Mud Mountain
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6/6/2017 02:36:26 pm
What memories your post brought back from my childhood in South Carolina. We had 12 acres that I roamed. While the rest of the family was watching TV, I was watching the Northern Lights. A very rare sight that far south. I played in the neighbor's spring run and climbed trees. Thank you so much for sharing and bringing back my memories. Best wishes for you.
6/6/2017 03:24:43 pm
You could see the northern lights from there? Wow! Thank you too Joyce for sharing your own love of the wild.
8/6/2017 04:19:43 am
It is very rare that the Aurora can be seen that far south but it did happen in 1957 I think. It was so beautiful with blue and green and looked about 6 inches wide. Still captivating.
. Claudia Armstrong
6/6/2017 03:16:02 pm
Sooo timely for me today and so beautifully and perfectly expressed. Living in the boonies of Panama, I have of late been contemplating change, but thinking I can experience the best of both worlds. I can use this as my home base AND continue the adventure of exploring this amazing world.....vamous a ver. *To co-create an Eden is probably the greatest blessing a human can have. To hold a space sacred, sense the power of the trees and the breath of the land, to forge relationships with the myriad of creatures that hop and crawl and amble over the skin of our planet, to hear the messages slipping out of the forest, to feel intrinsically a valuable part of something without compromising a speck of your truth, to have a space where you gain power when you feel disempowered, or nourishment when you feel hungry, or love when you feel bereft; these things are Earth’s gift to us.
6/6/2017 03:23:30 pm
Oh thank you so much Claudia! I really appreciate that. Yes, it's that perennial dilemma; the road or the land. I hope you can create it all.
6/6/2017 03:54:11 pm
It was quickly shared and loved! (With good reason) And I have no doubt that I will create it All! :) But I do hold the *All* loosely, for it is so often so much more than I can possible imagine.
6/6/2017 03:39:42 pm
What this marvellous reflection again reveals is the power of memory, and the preciousness of the individual' s experience. We are all fortunate that you have such command of words we can share in it too.
6/6/2017 05:22:22 pm
Lovely comment Phillippa
6/6/2017 11:55:36 pm
Beautiful words indeed. The power of memory...
6/6/2017 11:47:09 pm
This was very timely for me as well. "It is always in the absence of a thing that we comprehend its true value." 9 months ago my hubby and I sold our 'homestead' of 14 acres that we lovingly built over 15 years; in our mid-60s it was getting to be too much work and hard to leave to travel.
6/6/2017 11:58:47 pm
Oh the bingo and horseshoes! Ha ha ha, yes I completely know what you mean. Fortunately, in Spain, Portugal and Scotland wild camping is permitted and easy. It was in one such natural spot this post came to me. I too find the limitations of a campsite (not to mention the darn lawn mowing) difficult.
7/6/2017 03:27:00 am
I'm sorry but I missed why you had to leave mud mountain.
7/6/2017 09:27:39 am
The whole story is in the blog, but a summary is the post before this one;. http://www.themudhome.com/the-mountain-blog/how-and-why-it-all-ended
7/6/2017 08:52:39 pm
Thank you for the link. I'm so sorry you had to go through all of that. Change is hard but necessary it seems. I just had a heart attack 2 weeks ago and so my building has to wait until I recover and get my strength back. Life is interesting for sure.
9/6/2017 03:47:58 pm
Gosh! Rest well Connie. But you are right. We need change. For all its challenges, ultimately it's renewing.
7/6/2017 10:55:29 am
A very timely piece for me as I consider whether to move from my 7,000 sq m of peace now that I am there alone. Waking up in the morning, taking my coffee out to the terrace and just hearing the sound of birds usually makes me determined to stay.
9/6/2017 03:46:43 pm
Yeah it really is a wonderful life. Birds, oh birds. They are a joy. Hope things are well in Bodrum.
8/6/2017 11:59:59 am
Well hello! Greetings to you from down under! In a world where we are horrified, shocked and tested every day your story once again is so timely.. You are an inspiration....keep writing and keep going..
9/6/2017 03:48:58 pm
Oh hello there Saadet! Thank you so much.
9/6/2017 09:54:00 am
As always your blog hits home for many of your readers and certainly for me. A beautiful piece and a joy to read. Thank you so much for putting your "Mud Mountain Blog" into book format and sharing in it's entirety, though I have to admit, I have saved everyone of your blogs and of course have your Mud Mountain original book.
9/6/2017 03:54:17 pm
Oh Sandi, thanks once again. Your comments are always from the heart. Yes, I agree it's crucial to see how connected we all are (because we are). Our challenges, triumphs, and ultimately our fates are very much intertwined. And we all share so much. Often, interestingly, at similar times.
9/6/2017 06:45:31 pm
24/6/2017 01:46:01 am
Thank you for your beautiful words Karen.
25/9/2017 09:21:10 pm
Sigh....sorry you had to leave your paradise. I have a memory of living with my grandmother, who had a small farm in the city of Berkeley, CA. (1970s) Playing in the soil, watching insects, caterpillars and the like. Eating from the land. It was a wonderful combination of urban and rural.
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Atulya K Bingham
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