This weekend we planted two apple trees and a pear tree in memory of my Dad. I’m hoping these can become a tangible and material way to remember him. I have a had a constant feeling, intense at times, that there must be something ‘I can do’. I guess this is the helplessness of grief. I’ve resisted reading any material about grief and resisted writing about it all, I wanted to wait and indeed I hoped that some kind of answer or action might present itself to me. Dad had fruit trees in his garden, the fate of these trees, the passage of time marked in and through them, provided material for his last art work. He had hoped to make it through to the spring to see the trees blossom, it wasn’t to be and he was ‘taken’ in the early spring.
Let these trees blossom and let this small piece of France be a place of memory to my dear Father.
Sector 28, for want of a better name. There is a bit of a sector not far from the main area at Laramade. It does seem that there is quite a bit of potential in this valley, last year I found https://andywhall.com/2017/04/22/aftermath/ and in another sector, after a bit of a clean, this very good arete emerged, starts hard and gets easier; ‘Scully’ 7B/+ or thereabouts I think. Very close to this I cleaned up another good problem, more like 6C ish. This area has been climbed in before, there is an old hard project from a few years back, with a video lurking on the web, but the area has quite a bit of potential. I have a few projects on the go some stupid some realistic.
Six months have passed since my Father ceased to look over our lives and two months have passed since our baby was born.
I was invited to take part in; Performing Mountains, An international symposium on Mountain Culture at Leeds University in March. Unfortunately I couldn’t attend so worked up a remote presentation. I put something together quite quickly, I guess it’s not necessarily the most captivating video, but it does include a chunky section of text derived from my Doctoral thesis and recently extrapolated into a book called ‘boulder being’. It reminded me of a presentation I made at art college, after which I was met with a three minute silence, this at the time I thought was either a stunned audience reaction to the brilliance of the work, or a polite pause as the staff and fellow students thought of something nice to say. Good luck to anyone that tries to watch the full 17.38 mins.
Featured image by Graham Gaunt
For all who knew my Dad…now is the time to raise a glass to Dick. He passed away last Monday 30th April.