I’ll stick with the format of last year – a photo (ish) a day (10 in total), since it makes my job easier. So much happens at gatherings, it’s hard to remember it all, and to record it all in interesting way, so we’ll stick with giving you a snapshot (geddit?)
This year’s spring gathering took place in Peski, a tiny village in Russia, on the Gulf of Finland. It was beautiful, helped by the unseasonably warm weather. You can find the epistle and the minutes (and eventually the photos I guess) on the EMEYF website here. I’ve also written a report for EMES, which will be available in their publication Among Friends, later this year.
I sort of dipped in and out of St Petersburg, rather than having a single block of time there – Emmie and I had a morning there before going to Spring Gathering, we had a day trip during the gathering, and I had an afternoon, and a short morning before heading on to the next leg of my journey..
St P was more comparable to a western European city, in terms of the scale and architecture, how close everything was pressed together. It definitely felt like the former imperial capital it is. Although it was prettier and less Soviet than Moscow, it was also bit scruffy like it wasn’t being taken care of as much as Moscow. The canals also helped increase the attractiveness.
Continuing last year’s tradition I thought I would write a post about the books I read in 2018, although it was rather a long time ago now. I didn’t read as many in 2018 as I did in 2017 – I blame starting back with studying (which, as with my bachelor’s, mainly consists of reading), the lack of Harry Potter this year, and the fact that at least two of these are reallly loonng..
I was recently on the Island of Ireland (I say recently, it was the end of March/start of April), for the Spring Gathering of European and Middle East Young Friends, and a little holiday. The epistle is here, and the official photos will presumably be available here eventually. In the meantime though here’s my photo journal – (almost) a photo a day from the trip
Every three years, British Quakers have a big get together, where around 1,500 Qs converge for a week or so, usually on a university campus or similar, mainly because they’re the only places big enough to put us all up.
In 2017, it happened in Warwick, and that’s where E and I headed from Oslo (via Lewes). As ever with Quaker gatherings there’s far too much going on for me to detail every little thing that happened, so I will group it into a few main themes: pilgrims, world stuff, business, and everything else.
Feel free to skip bits of less interest for you, and apologies to non-Quaker readers – I’m open to any and all questions you might have (maybe that should be another post..)
Continuing our recap on my 2016, next up on my list of Quaker events was the one-off All-Age Gathering (AAG) organised by EMEYF, the organisation of young Quakers in Europe and the Middle East which I serve as secretary, and have done for almost two years now.
The AAG began slowly for me, as I had arrived early, and leant the organising committee a hand to set up the site and welcome the arrivals trickling in. Since I’m involved with the central committee of EMEYF, you might assume I had some idea what was coming, but I’d managed to keep out of the main organisation, only having helped to prepare a few sessions.. So I wasn’t really sure how the week was going to turn out, but as people arrived from across the continent, from babes in arms to octogenarians, I could tell it was going to be a very particular kind of event.
First of all, an acknowledgement – I’ve not written on this blog in at least 4 months (and that was just sharing something I’d written on Facebook – my appeal to people’s common sense re Brexit apparently had little effect). I’m currently au chômage, as they say in French. So hopefully I can kickstart this again, and get back to (semi-)regular posting.
First of all there’s a lot to catch up on…
Quaker update: I went to three Quaker Yearly Meetings this year – Sweden, Britain and the Netherlands. The first was for work, my last trip as a professional Quaker for QCEA (who I left at the end of May). The other two were for pleasure.