Just to be clear, this is my very personal account, not an official record 😉

stall: local slow foods, yum!

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DSC_0028DSC_0026DSC_0030DSC_0036   DSC_0041  Nottingham Peace Fair 2014 was one of 30+ events for Nottingham’s Week for Peace. At a planning meeting back in November/December 13, Quakers hosted an interfaith and community based meeting, with maybe 60 people attending, out of hundreds invited – sadly one group were missed, the Ukrainians, who would have loved to have been part of it, I found out 2 days before the Fair, boo! A lesson in treble checking, we have some 90+ communities within Nottingham, many with community centres and organisations, so keeping all the email contacts up-to-date is not the easiest task… Anyway, Lynne Richardson, who became the anchor of the Week for Peace, herding cats with humour and grace, mentioned she wished we could have an event like the Green Fair, a huge festival that fills the Arboretum Park…but she knew we didn’t have the money for it as the Council weren’t interested in supporting anything other than publicity via their newsletter. (mutter mutter £14,000 flyover by the Red Arrows for United Forces Day mutter mutter)

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Having been at various markets/ events held at Sneinton Market, I thought we could put on a little sister version, smaller, but still valuable, and being the relentless optimist that I am, I took on most of the organising, getting support from friends outside the committee, as they were plenty stretched already 🙂

After a few mishaps – l did not expect to be in a major flare for the last two MONTHS of organising, and due to damaging myself with the trip to London to hang installations for Loudest Whispers I was already behind with my art work for Week for Peace – it all came together really well on the day, even the sun shone for the middle bit 🙂

We had 20 stalls, ranging from inner peace (a Reiki healer), domestic and community peace (POW, Women’s Aid Pet Refuge Project, Unite/unemployed, Veggies, Animal Rights, Arimathea) politics with heart and compassion (Green Party and Left Unity) to local and international campaigns (Quaker Peace in Action, Palestinian Solidarity, WDM, CND, Amnesty, Greenpeace, Frack Free Notts) and then some fundraising and crafter’s stalls, plants and a slow food stall and then my stall had the tombola for Refuges for Pets (fosters pets for women and children at Women’s Aid refuges) which raised £28 and a possible foster carer. I also had plenty of takers for my vegan cookies, baked goods and crafts for Action Village India, thanks to selling a machine embroidered journal that raised £50, which is a big help to a micro charity. Not sure if it’s selfish, but I really like to feel that I’ve made a difference… with the amount of spoons all this took, I needed to feel it was worth it. There’s been a discussion on some PTSD pages on Facebook about what helps, and I’m very sure being able to make a positive contribution helps me…Having goals and feedback is really helpful for rebuilding self esteem and lifting thoughts out of the trauma tracks. It has to be carefully balanced though, and I’ve really missed doing the Action Village India stalls since I got fibromyalgia. David was a great help with preparing stuff and my lovely homehelp was a star about fitting in extra washing up when I’ve had bake-and -freeze sessions! Seeing 12 bags of cookies and 6 packs of flapjack and some fruit rolls fly off the stall was very uplifting. I enjoyed performing new poems too, though I wish I’d managed some time to rehearse just before, but I was wearing too many hats for that…

 

 

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We had two sets of performers, Mouthy Poets and Gary Morgan at beginning and end with Single Bass, El Dia, Tonya and Faye,  Sam Hope and me again in the middle… very enjoyable. There is a film clip coming which has some of the performers on, so I will post that another time. I was amazed to find out later from Tonya that she and Faye haven’t been playing long, their cover of a Pink song was David, my helpful neighbour’s favourite, while I preferred their Indigo Girls number 😉

 

Everyone had a good time, I think,  including the Sneinton Market Officers, Wendy and Brian, who were so supportive and I hope enjoyed their thank you goodies! There was a lovely relaxed atmosphere and I got a lot of thank yous, which was very pleasing because by the time I got home I could barely move 😉

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Maresa of Mouthy Poets preparing her interpreter to perform her work, her poem about de-cluttering the recycling was one of my favourite moments, best was probably Single Bass playing this song, Heavy Woman, which has been a favourite since before we became friends:

http://www.single-bass.co.uk/songs/heavy-woman

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