It is wonderful to have met so many people who I can draw inspiration from. As I have been exploring along the course of this journey I have been able to encounter some amazing people and networking with them has definitely given me cause to think about the the progress towards my own future.Today I am in North wales, it is raining, and the time is 0830. I believe the rain has come to all Britain though so it is simply ironic that it coincides with my day around Anglesey but I admit this is the one day I expected rain and true to life I am in it.
On the 9th of course I awoke in Daeun’s apartment in Lincoln. It was my first time using airb&b and there is a lot to be said for it. I may even start hosting myself. After packing my kit I look for Daeun, but no-one is home except for me and the kittens one of whom starts to climb the blinds in my room. This was a mistake and I turn to see both the blind and the kitten, at a thud, sprawled upon the floor so as I can do nothing more than leave a note explaining and saying thank you I leave for the Lincoln vegan fair posting the keys back through the door.
That morning I actually went up to Pimiento beside Lincoln cathedral to eat. The medieval quarter to the city has immense character and, along with including the whole of east Anglia, I plan for a return visit. The breakfast was good but I think their lunches would be more impressive. I had porridge and decaf coffee. It was good but I really went for the company as I could have had it at the flat. It was my pleasure therefore to meet two tourists from near Burnley who sat at the adjacent table. We chatted about vegan – nonvegan relationships, veganism in the workplace and the drug smuggling industry as well as the issues facing door security at the clubs and pubs of the Midlands. The couple were remarkably committed to each other. They were not both veggie but the one curtailed his habits and the other accepted his lifestyle gently offering encouragement towards a more mindful perspective. The issue that fascinated me most though drug smuggling really dominated the dialogue was teaching life skills to adult learners (specifically cooking). The teacher was required to instruct traditional techniques of cooking roast chicken, beef casserole and so forth. Her emphasis on veg. habits where she had the freedom to give good council was of course in calibration to the skills that her students were expected to have. If education wouldn’t support meat eating patterns within a generation society could shift towards a sustainable and healthier lifestyle at the same time as improving our climate.
After breakfast I looked into Lincoln cathedral but I wasn’t keen on paying an entry fee. I have attended the evensong at Canterbury, and Peterborough and though I would have enjoyed seeing the architecture the vegan fair was my priority.
The first thing I saw was the crowd of diners outside enjoying the sunshine with good food, some with beer, and the circus performers. The stilt walkers in their spangle and silver were very amusing and children ran around with painted faces including lions and fairies. I interviewed the organiser of the fair and then set about exploring the stalls. There were lots of local traders providing gluten free breads, vegan cupcakes, merchandise for campaign groups, cruelty free clothing, wash stuff, and make up plus all sorts of crafts and activist stands such as sanctuaries, and politics.
As I walked through Andrew, a fellow vegan motorcyclist approached me and recognising my gear started up a conversation about the difficulties of obtaining suitable kit. We both agreed that safety was paramount. If I had a choice between spending £50 on a second hand leather jacket and trousers or 50 on plastic knee, elbow and shoulder pads I would either wait to save up enough money for proper Kevlar protective gear, or with knowledge that it is only temporary I would have to get leather.
Finally after eating a late lunch I went along to the talk being presented by Marcus and Ruth of the Species Barrier. Their presentation was great and we debated a variety of issues including vegan advocacy, the risks of infighting amongst the vegan community, and whether in a potential vegan utopian future it would be feasible to reintroduce to the uk a top predator such as the wolf. Their response was noncommittal as they had not thought of the issue before so we ended on the thought of over population.
Can human society justify the proportion of the earth’s resources that we use to the detriment of the other species on our planet?
To end the day I have a tea in the vegan -Nepalese restaurant and proceed up to York to Charlottes house before a late supper at El Piano and an interview with Bob the proprietor of the establishment.