Mittwoch, 15. Juni 2022

Salt flask WIP


In the woods I found me a piece of deer shank (taken with permission, of course) and thought I would make me a salt flask. I sawed off the joints with the saw of a Victorinox locksmith SAK. 

I fitted a piece of elm into the bottom, leaving it a tad longer to facilitate carving. Since it was fresh elm, make sure you really have to whack it in (you might want to wrap the bone really tightly with wire or cordage before, because it might split. If you possibly can, use dry wood for the bottom.

Glued it in with pitch glue. Carved a stopper from boxwood with tarred cordage for a seal. Carve a recession into it, fill that with tar, wax or glue and wrap the fibres or cordage around it while the glue is still hot. Let it cool, cutting off the excess cordage or fibres. 

Et voilà. 

Salt flask. ☺️ 

The decoration is made from charred elm bark in kólrosing technique. 

Now off to decorate that bone. ☺️ 


Dienstag, 14. Juni 2022

Insanity

 The title of the post is insanity.

You know perfectly well, why.

I do not need to go on lengthy about that. Because, well, who cannot relate to the fact that we delve ever more and ever deeper into its dark depths?

Life has become shitty. For you, for me, for most people on Earth, and it is not a secret that it is deteriorating.

You don't need me to tell you that. I do not like to dwell on that. 

But there is hope. There is always hope. Never forget that. We will be fine. 

We just need to stop believing in do-no-goods, banksters, hipsters and politicians. 

Actually, I do not have a political alternative. I have no idea how we can solve all that shit going on in the world. And I can safely say that I have and had no part in it. But that is not helpful, either. I can only say what it is that helps me, and you might guess it. 

It is the woods, of course. I find I am spending more time with trees and deer and foxes and hares and robins and thrushes, owls and eagles, bussards and salamanders, toads and axolotls, trout and badger and what have you than I do with humans. And if you do this you realize two things. The first thing is, how toxic the world of humans really is. The second is that it does not matter. Because just fifteen minutes in nature have a great and soothing effect on your soul. 



I often sit in the woods carving myself a spoon or what have you. I give myself something to do. I keep learning a lot, every day, and it never ceases to amaze me how much there is still to learn, and that is a very good thing. I concentrate on that. 

And, on my oftimes nocturnal bimbles, I keep meeting dear (or was that deer? 😁) friends. Since we treat each other with mutual respect, well, at times that guy still shies, and I sometimes scare him just so he does not forget humans in general are dangerous, but last time he actually came closer. And tried to boop me with his snoot. Which felt otherworldly good. 



"My" birds are raising their offspring. And I feel right at home with them. 
What is happening in the world right now is of course deadly serious. Its power, however, lies in your despair. 

Don't. 

There is hope. 

Stop believing in this world of mankind. There is a world out there. And it takes place (amongst some other places) in the woods. 

It takes place (amongst a lot of other places) in the woods. 

Mora Garberg review


 I got myself a Garberg Carbon, courtesy of www.westfalia.de, who offered me a deal I could not resist. And actually I was a bit shocked by its performance.


Do not get me wrong. I am a knifemaker myself, and while I do not do beautiful, and am my own worst critic, over the years I have learned to make some pretty decent blades for myself. I also do quite a bit of bushcrafty things, nothing fancy, and I am living that way, not doing it, if you get my meaning. I do a fair bit of woodworking and whittling, too. I own a great many knives, and the Garberg always reminded me of the Fjällkniven F 1, and I have next to no funds, so I always was a bit reluctant to buy a knife with a similar concept to that knife.


I was wrong. How wrong I was. ☺️


The first shock I was in for was when I was first given the package. Now I own quite a few Moras, and maybe that sounds nuts, but all of them have that special Mora feeling. You all know what I mean. While they still feel rock solid, they have that light "carry all day without noticing" feeling and the a very nimble balance. When I first took up the Garberg, I nearly dropped it, it was far heavier than I expected. This is not a criticism, by the way, I was just taken unawares. Balance point is a bit behind the index finger. Mora could better this by machining out the hind part of the tang a wee bit more to bring it a bit further towards the index finger to make it even more dexterous, but this is complaining on a very high level. 




The package, by the way, comes with a sustainability certificate. That is Mora for you. Gotta love them.


Straight out of the box, sharpness left something to be desired, but just three strokes on a strop fixed that. After that it was scary sharp. Not just shaving, hair popping away in every direction. Awesome.


I harvested Chaga with it and rammed the tip into a piece of aged birchwood and levered it out sideways. It was not even warmed up by that kind of abuse.




I chopped antler with it. Now keep in mind that this is a Scandi grind with just a tiny micro bevel. You don't do this to that kind of grind. You simply don't. It came out with no dents or cracks or anything at all. It lost some sharpness, and that was all. You could still do these beautiful wood lock shavings with it afterwards, and in aged boxwood, which is very hard.


Actually I carved some twenty spoons with it, processed tinder conk, harvested Chaga and used it in the kitchen, used it as a chisel and a prybar. Of course it is not a kitchen laser, but it is still possible to make see - through onion rings and make short terms of taters, veggies and meat. Of course, due to the thickness of the blade, carrots and celary are split rather than cut, but if you adapt a bit, it also is an awesome knife for field cooking. The black coating is as good as new after all this abuse. 






To date, I did not have to put anything abrasive near it. Edge retention is very, very good. 


The handle to me is a really comfortable outright treat. Due to the almost symmetrical shape it also excels at in-reverse power cuts when whittling, which hints of an extraordinary performance when skinning. The blade shape would also excel at that.


The sheath comes with a rather coarse diamond hone and a fire steel. Both the spine and the protruding piece of tang are ground to 90°, allowing to use the firesteel with great efficiency. The firesteel snaps into a thermoplastic holder, with an awesome fit.




If I need to find anything not so good, it is the retention of the sheath. The knife can fall out when upside down. Given that this is a very, very good knife also in a tactical or military setting, I would suggest Mora could add some kind of mechanical retention device to secure it in these settings.


Actually this is the one knife. You can throw a lot of abuse at it and it is not even warmed up. But it is not a sharpened prybar, either. You can still - with some compromise, of course-use it for cooking tasks.


I am not impressed easily. But I am impressed.


I know some of you might ponder whether to get one. Do (If you can afford it). You will not regret it. I am aware that there are other knives on the market, like the Condor Terrasaur or several Finnish products. They might be good in their own right, maybe better and with a better value for money. I have not yet had the chance to handle them. But this here is not a comparison test, just a review. I do not get paid for it. All I can do is offer you my thoughts on this here knife. And given I have spent a lot of dough on knives, had I had a chance to get my hands on this, maybe it would have saved me some money. Actually, of course, there is a huge gap between, say, a perfectly able Mora companion when pricing is concerned. I, for one, understood the moment I first handled this. While a companion is really tough, too, the Garberg is neigh on indestructable, at least you get the impression. Even to have that feeling in the woods is reassuring and, at least for me, worth one or the other Euro more.


As I said, I can really stand behind this product. 

Dienstag, 4. Januar 2022

Leather pouch for a Victorinox Forester SAK


Now you faithful readers know that I am a big fan of Victorinox knives and especially the forester wood, which might just about the perfect knife for light bimbles and hikes. So when the opportunity arose for Fritz to get one, I suggested he should fire away. He even got it for free. Now he cherishes a lot, and for fear of loosing it, always left it at home. 

This was when I had a chat with Santa. He immediately put a red cap on my head and gave me even more green clothes and let me use his workshop to make the old man a leather pouch from some thick and sturdy leather. I messed up several times, since I did not use a scheme, but eventually it all worked out. Put some stain on and formed the leather around the knife. Works even when the flap is open. 

The joy of the old man when Santa brought his gift was priceless. ☺️ 

 


 

Baton, don't break


Course we do. We do it all. And there are a lot of knives on the market designed for exactly that. 

Which means that they are, at best a compromise. 

I am talking about batoning. Of course, the tool of choice is an axe or hatchet if you want to split wood. Even better, a froe. If you have none, you always risk breaking your belt knife, which really sucks. Or you carry around a froe with a tip and a different handle, aka Survival knife. You can find some which are really great cutters, too, no argument necessary. But fact is, batoning puts a lot of stress on a blade. 

This is how I like to do it. 

Gently tap the spine of the knife so that a crack opens. 


 Whittle a glut or wedge. 
At first, insert the glut below the edge of the blade. The knife will then be easy to remove. 

With a controlled motion, using one hand to keep the wedge in the crack, turn it towards the top. 

Split the branch with the wedge. 


Now you have two halves, e.g for whittling a spoon. 


Still alive, smithing, leatherworking, knives, hatchets and a bit of woodworking-and a very shitty title for a post ,because it is too long 🤣


So, phew. A long, long time without a Blog post, for various reasons, some of them obvious, some less so. One thing is a technical reason. I am very often in want for Internet connectivity and writing on a smartphone sucks big time, too. Then I am on Facebook and I really underestimated all the work that this meant. I can relate to anyone not wanting to be on FB, even more now that I have personal experience, so I do not buy into the "blogging is dead" mindset. I am an old fart so I am entitled to some geriatric stubbornness. If you guys are still here, awesome. I love you all for this. 

Another, more obvious reason is that I have always been someone with some weird ideas on planning a career. I never got the gist on why the ratrace should be a good thing. I did my part and when I worked, I always did my best, because I wanted to do some good work, not because I wanted to climb a ladder. That has backfired big time during the pandemic. Of course I am right, but that does not buy you food. Of course the ratrace is even now hitting the concrete wall at full speed. I do not need to tell you about the Shitshow going on. You are not reading my Blog because I tell you that the World is shit. It is. We all know it. And it does not offer any of us any resilience at all ranting about it. 

And I daresay, that last year we all strived and struggled to find whatever resilience we could find. I certainly did. 

And that is what this post is about. We all are a bit like hamsters in a treadmill. Running fast and getting nowhere. And the postmodern capitalist mindset (and mind you, I am still not a communist) is becoming very dangerous very fast, because it has become some sort of pseudo religion. The stock market does not regulate a Virus. Or climate change. I spare you the details. 

A lot of people have no other religion or spirituality other than capitalism. This is not meant to shame or criticize them. But it is a truth. Obviously it is my truth, not everyone's. And our leaders and good shepherds, such as those space nerds sacrificing Earth for their megalomaniac Mars Mission dreams, simply eat up the flock instead of guarding it. Nuff said. So it all fails and falters. The System doesn't work. There is no such thing as politics anymore, just Stock market economy and a lot of corruption as has been at the end of all high civilizations in history. It is nothing at all surprising. 

But nuff said, we all have to carry on. We need to survive that Shitshow. 

Now you all know that I am not quite fond of the Survival and prepping crowd. Because, of course, you can build a bunker, hoard weapons and ammunition and dry food, the more disgusting, the better. Of course, there is a time and place for this. But that timeline and place will come even sooner the more you cultivate this mindset. It is a paradoxon.

But sitting in your bunker waiting for your enemies might help you to survive. Even not necessarily so, but there is a certain probability. But it is not living. It offers no resilience. Because, well, the bad news is that we are all in this together. It is not as simple as "us versus them". And, most importantly, you need a reason not only to survive, but a reason to live. 

Fear is never a good councellor. It, too, has a time and place, but you need more to stay resilient. 

I can safely say that I am afraid. I am very afraid. And maybe righteously so. Of course I am. But not all of the time. Of course I avoid people. I wear a mask, I wash my hands and I advocate sensible vaccination. But this post is not about discussing that, either. 

I find I really close the doors against the world a lot these days. I mean, it is toxic in more than one sense of the word. In another Post long ago I have already talked about the "civic duty of escapism". I find this really valuable and it gives me a good perspective to actually live. 

Because I think I have found a way of life that is called escapist. But reality shows us just and even now that what was called reality does not work. There is no such thing as eternal growth. In physics and chemistry, in biology, mathematics and even cosmology, growth at a certain point tends to fall into entropy, and while I am a specialist in neither field of expertise I think that there is no exception from the norm. 

I have a lot of books. I love to read them. I love to think. But thinking things through to the end does not offer me a lot of pleasure these days. You have to stop it from time to time. Instead, I have found it very beneficial to do something with my hands. 

Crafting stuff has always been a haven and a home for me. In school, I was a weird kid. I have written a lot about that, so I just spare you the details. But whenever I was being mobbed or beaten, the shop in the basement or the woods were my safe space and a place for retreat. I still have not bought a single piece of furniture in my life. I still use the wardrobes and cabinets and shelves I made together with my father when I was nine. They are not perfect and they do not need to be. But every time I look at them, every time I use them, I remember where I come from, what I am and enjoy them. I remember my father and mother and the bad times and the good. 

When you came down into the basement of our home, there was a very characteristic smell. First, there was a pantry, in the dryest room with a lot, a fecking lot of conserves and food and my mother also did the laundry in it and crafted her own stuff in there. The Workshop had this warm smell, a bit with a vanilla note of the warm shavings from the wood lathe and circular saw, but also the stern and hard smells of various metals, including the somewhat incense - like smell of titanium, and the various smells of lubing, grease and detergents, varnishs, lacquers and paints. But what I really loved most was the smell of wood. 

We presumeably had every tool man has ever invented. ☺️ And my father taught me how to use a lot of them, as far as he knew, at least. He was often a harsh teacher, but I am really grateful for all the knowledge he gave me. When I think about these times now, I am even more grateful. Because it is the smells and the knowledge of my hands that mean a haven and a home for me. Maybe you have something like that, too. If not, make it. It is not too late. 

So, doing stuff with my hands is what saved me and still does. And I daresay you deserve some impressions what I was about all of this time. Of course I did a lot more, from foraging to smithing to riding to more sensible stuff. I spare you the promises of upcoming posts, because I might not be able to follow through. But there is enough material. Or would be. I hope you can excuse me if it doesn't work out. 


The knife above is a story in itself. And a good memory. When I was working for Gunnar on the Jagd und Hund Expo in Dortmund, he gave me a load of really awesome Mora blanks. As I already said elsewhere, if I have ever met a hard - working man who was good - natured with awesome manners, style and humour, it was Gunnar. We have not met for far too long. If you read this, Gunnar, "tack för senåste", and from my heart. I have always meant to show him an interpretation of the classic Mora with a bog oak handle. It has taken a lot of time, but, well, here it is. ☺️ I also added a nickle silver ferrule courtesy of Mr. Weber Jun. from www.weberknives.com. I still need to make a sheath for it, but it will definitively be a user. 
Now you guys may know my positions on Moras by now. They are a reality check for every knifemaker worth his shit. It is not easy to best their performance. It is neigh on impossible to best their value for money. I cannot beat their quality... By far, that is. ☺️ This is one of my favourite knives these days. I reforged it from a somewhat silly design of a blacksmith knife I once made from 1.2842 (O2) adding a little bit of extra pewpew to the tempering and grind. Which is almost flat to zero, just a tiny bit convex. Handle is made from birch burr, copper, bronze, and glued in with pitch glue. Which, by the way, works really nice. I am still trying to figure it out, but I daresay, it works a cinch for rat tail tangs like that one. 
This is still a work in progress. A Virobloc from an Opinel, a boxwood handle and a damascus blade. Still needs a bit of fiddling about, and I am still learning how to do it right, but I am really loving it. 
Not everything you can do is something big. Sometimes whittling a humble gypsy flower is enough to get your mind off things. Cuppa tree, a simple project accomplished in ten minutes is often enough do regain enough composure to plough on. 

Just for fun I forged a ram's head walking stick topper out of spring steel. 
I also did quite a lot of spooncarving. I still take care of Fritz, the partner of my laid mother. I left this one quite raw so he could finish it. He was enjoying it mucho. And we had a beer. Perfect. ☺️ 
Sitting in dark woods has become a custom for me. I had forged a tomahawk, which is something of a tall Fimbulmyrk tale in itself, for I found a hatchet someone started from crucible steel embedded in the soil. That guy must have given up on punching through the steel, for there were only superficial chisel marks. 
I made a handle from some mystery hardwood I found. 

This is a ladle I carved very recently. It is made from birch wood. 


So folks, I do not know if you need that, but it is not just about Survival. It is about living. To me, life is good when it can be this way. Most of those things are for free, if you know how to. But even if you don't feel so inclined, a cuppa in the woods goes a long way in keeping you sane. 

Please take good care, stay safe and sensible and don't care about every mumbo-jumbo you hear. 

Hope to write again soon, yours truly, 

Fimbulmyrk. ☺️ 
 

Dienstag, 6. April 2021

That vegan thing .


These are no steaks. 

They are not even meat. 

Yes, you guys got the right Blog. 

Yes, it is me, Fimbulmyrk. ☺️ 

The magic troll, in her usual awesomeness, had made some Seitan. Now do not get me wrong. I have some really big questions concerning veganistic mindsets, as in contrast to vegan food. Some years ago the WHO demanded to substitute every food with surrogates, slowly removing vitamins from daily victualies, and that, while understandeable in the context of ever decreasing Vitamin content in plant-based food, together with claims by the then Monsanto Corporation, now a part of the German Bayer Corporation to dominate the food market with genetically manipulated crop seeds and thusly reaching World dominion (no joke) made me a bit suspicious of buying surrogates, so to say. 

Now do not get me wrong again. I do not buy into any world conspiracy theories and please do not quote old uncle Fimbulmyrk. It is highly probable, but I really have no evidence either. I am deeply suspicious of any hooray about veganism is all. But I am deeply suspicious of any conspiracy theory as well. 

The soy and surrogates food industry takes up nearly as much space as the breeding of lifestock. If you want to do good (and have a tasty meal), buy locally, support small farming businesses, period. 

Anyway, for the aforementioned reasons I always was a bit reluctant to try surrogates. Also, I did not quite get the point. If I do not want to eat meat, I simply do not eat meat. ☺️ 

Now the magic troll, who is an absolute food conoisseur, and, truth be told, so little of a vegan that she gets the golden Patty of honour for veganists on Facebook unfriending her 😁❤️😈, made vegan food and liked it. 

Truth be told, we both are fascinated with all things alchemy, and that Seitan stuff triggered our fondness hard. Also it is dead simple to make, can be made with few and organic ingredients and is rich with protein. 

It is not suited for people with an adversion to Gluten. Because that is what it is. 

You make a stiff dough of wheat meal and water and knead it hard for some 20 minutes. Then cover with cold water, let it rest (I left mine over night) and then, by adding more meal, add some stiffness back to it and then knead out all the starch. Well, you might not get out all of it, but it does not matter. Cook it for some twenty minutes, then press out most of the water with a cheese cloth or something like that. After that, tear it into strings and knead the strings onto each other several times. It will then very much resemble chicken meat. 

Since I am not a vegan, I put smoked sprout heads and tails into strong vinegar together with salt for a fast Garum which, when used sparsely, adds a nice Umami flavour. I also experimented with fried tomato concentrate with fried wild garlic, roasted nettle seeds. Knead it well in. 


 I ate it with fried nettle leaves, fresh wild garlic and tomatoes, fried walnuts with fried nettle, lesser celandine, wild garlic and ground elder. You can also use chicken spice to make it more chicken - like. Actually it can taste very much like chicken with only a tiny hint of meal flavour. The more Umami you add, the less distinguisheable it becomes from real meat.

For me, it is poverty food, because those steaks cost me from 0.3-0.8€for a whole meal. I also want to try and make "hunger pills" from Seitan.


Actually, I will not stop eating meat, of course. But good vegan food is indeed possible. ☺️ ❤️ 

Sonntag, 7. März 2021

Huffing, puffing, Nostalgia and weird stuff


The trail was calling. 

Sounds a bit commonplace. 

But in fact it is not. Nothing is self - evident any more. Having had all my plans, even the B's and C's and D's shattered left me with no money whatsoever. Mountainbiking is for the rich and privileged people, not for people like me. But I spare you the whining. Let us just say, I am reluctant to ride, for if anything breaks or has to be replaced, that is about riding for me, and I maybe will need the bike for bugging out of here when the riots start. On the other hand, much good does it do for you if you hide in a cellar. So I decided that a little toodling around would do no harm and made for the lane. 

Yup, you read right, the lane. I am totally out of shape, so endurance basics it has to be. Might be there will be some trails even in summer, depending on the situation. 

But enough politics for now. I daresay you read enough of the shite elsewhere. And those of you in the know might be able to understand what I mean with that windshield wiper effect. Doing the first turns of the cranks gets you out of Code Black. Some more and you get into that zone. Well, this time there was a lot of huffing and puffing involved before I got there, but finally I managed. Shoulda not eat a big bowl of rice pudding before going outside... ☺️ But it was oh so tasty! Paid the price with two flats, one on the left and one on the right. 😁 But when the fuel finally was processed enough, I really enjoyed the ride, and for a time, my worries and sorrows simply were not there. 

 Went to Witten and passed by the Bethaus smithy. Since Volker has died, the place has changed very much. Now, don't get me wrong, my faithful readers know that the dude sometimes drove me mad. He was quite certainly not a professional. And from a professional point of view, that place has improved hugely. Of course it was only partially accessible due to pandemic restrictions, but someone really knows what he is doing. And actually I was a bit surprised to receive a warm welcome and an invitation. 

But there is something missing, not just someone. Now Volker and I did not part ways professionally on the best of terms, because a lie on his part had cost me dearly (financially), but we remained friends. And of course I miss that strange guy. He was a kind and gentle man, and more, he tried to make it work for everyone. He was the heart of the place, a wild and chaotic and unprofessional heart. This spirit is gone for good. Instead, all the cogs are oiled and everything seems to work highly efficiently. Might be working there would be less chaotic, too. But rant as I may have had, now I ask myself if the old way might appeal to me better. It is just a question, not an answer, and given that they do not want me in the first place (at least noone wants to pay for what I do), it is merely academical. Maybe it is a mix of "don't know what you got until it's gone" and "the grass is always greener on the other side of life". Humans, myself not excluded, are strange. 


But I rode on. And I must still say that even if my bike is a bit beaten up now, even if the wheels are technically too small and the brakes are worn, it never fails to give me a huge grin. The sun was shining, and all was good. I was simply toodling along, taking in the sun, when I passed by a birch tree on the lane, infested with Chaga. Now I had little tools with me and no bag, so I had to improvise a lot. What I had, however, was my Victorinox Locksmith SAK, and that licce fella never ceases to amaze me. I was a bit reluctant with quite a bit of levering action going on, but these knives even stand up to that kind of abuse. Got me some Chaga. It was great. ☺️ 

Just wrapped it in a hanky and rode on. I was a bit lost in thought, and actually did not want to stop every five minutes to take photos, so there are fewer this time. 

Any which way, when I arrived in the town neighbouring my home, there was a guy with a really fucked up commuter bike sitting on a bench, smiling and greeting, and I nodded back. Now he was a bit lost, and, asking the way and me being all shit at explaining stuff to strangers, I agreed to just take him back on track. Dude, that guy had some steam! Friendly guy, too, so it all ended in some extra kilometres and a good two hours of really nice chatting while my buttocks froze from the cold. Turned out he seems to have been a smithing groupie from looooong ago in 'em days in the Bethaus smithy. 

Life walks in circles. 

I am stoked to learn what comes next. 


Samstag, 6. März 2021

Rapatap the birchsap tap rap ...☺️


The birds were singing and the sun was oh so warm. After all the cold and the shite happening all over the world this was really soothing. The woods are calling, and obviously I heed the call. 

What really feels great is that my sentiment of "why bother?" does not involve anything woodsy, crafty or natural. These things still give me the motivation to get out of bed, so to say. Because they make sense. Obviously, I am fucked, but on each outing in the woods I learn more how the woods work. Of course, they are in a sorry state, what with climate change killing fir, spruce, birch and beech, and I plant as many trees as I possibly can, but yup, we are ruled by idiots. That said, I left the politics at home. The birch sap is rising, and I like birch sap. ☺️ 
This creek is running with more water than it has in the last five years. This gives me a lot of hope, actually, that even if we get another summer of draught eventually, the new trees will eventually recuperate. As is, the woods are radically changed. 
The first spring blossoms, too, and something tasty to boot : Violets (viola, in German :Veilchen), with an anti - bacteria - effect, blood - cleaning, calming and anti - inflammatory. Also you can make a tasty tea or spice from it, a wonderful cordial and it goes into my "lawnmower - mead" 😁, Methubrawri in the language of the Dhiudhai na nÍamparaï, a mythic people I invented. Invented the language as well, BTW. ☺️ 
Now if the trees all die, how can he possibly tap a birch, some may ask. First, I very much know what I am doing, and all the trees I tapped are even now still alive, but then there was that stump of a recently felled tree, where the sap rises really strong. So strong in fact, that there was a rare bushcrafty treat. 
But first things first, out came the tools. 
And in no time the birch was on tap. 
In the meantime, I collected some last Chaga (Innonotus Obliquus, in German :Schiefer Schillerporling). And sat down to really savour a sip of tea made from rowanberries and roasted and dried apple I foraged in autumn last year. 

 On the detour then I was in for my treat... Some chunks of frozen birch sap.

It was a really cool outing. Well, pardon the pun. But actually, I could wish for little more. Sipping your sap and your tea from a gukši you have made with your own hands with a knife and a carving hatchet you have forged yourself while preparing the Chaga you have just collected in a dish you have made with your hands is more than just comforting. It is not only strangely soothing in a world gone stark raving mad, it is empowering. Everything of these items was made from junk. From scraps of steel to scraps of wood to food most people do not see. And it is all connected. 

We all need to change. Well, I never belonged at all, so maybe I can exclude myself a bit. A bit, because I still have to learn a lot. Most people think this means a loss of quality in life.

Personally I think, the opposite is true. This is how life is meant to be. I do not say this because I were a guru or something. We need less gurus and a lot of more common sense. It is nothing esoteric or philosophical. It is just getting the good stuff in, and then have a cuppa of the good stuff. And the good things are estimated as junk, and noone cares. But I do. 

I, for one, came home deeply content. It was a feeling you got when you came home as a kid and got a hot cocoa made by your mother. Only that my mother is dead now and I get that feeling in the woods. There is so much good in the world. We need to learn to appreciate more and learn to be humble and grateful... As we were as Kids, when we got our hot cocoa made by our mothers. 

And it feels plain and it feels good. 

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