The Pod Project has been a bit quiet the last while. Like everyone we have been adapting to the continually changing landscape of lockdown and restrictions but now with the solstice behind us, and as we enter the New Year, we start to see the bright days lengthening out to once again become longer than the darkness. And we look forward to what lies ahead in 2021. The last number of months have been challenging for many but they have also provided opportunity and insight.

For a time there, we could hear the trees rustle in the cities not just the countryside, we spotted city foxes running through the streets more boldly, we saw new flora and fauna in unmown green open spaces: cowslips, primroses, dandelions, self-heal, plantain, and clover all added shocks of colour to the monochrome green in less than a month. How long had those seeds been just under the surface waiting to unfurl as the lawnmower pushed them back each time? How quickly they made themselves know given even half a chance.

And there were many things we didn’t see and hear. 2020 was the year the machine stopped – or stuttered – allowing nature to push (back) out her edges. There were a few weeks where we didn’t hear traffic. And we found ourselves resting a little bit easier and taking the time to draw some deep breaths. The noise is back now, at least in part, and it’s somehow louder now that we remember what it was without it. And we’re left (re-)examining the trade-offs we’ve long acquiesced to.

And while nature was pushing out her edges, at the Pod Project, we examined our own. Like many, we were somewhat forced into a deep introspection that ultimately we welcomed. We’ve been watching ourselves, watching around us. We used this time to focus our minds and define more clearly our mission as well as figuring out how to reach the people who need us with the information and tools we already have on offer.

We started our “Lockdown Files” – beautiful talks by beautiful people: ideas for rewilding, guidance for foraging, sustainable ways to support wildlife, soil and bees, the importance of seed saving, and celebration and stories around a(n online) fire to name but a few. These talks will survive on YouTube long into the future and will hopefully be of use to many.

Being pushed into an online format at the start of our journey as an organisation has opened us up to the world. While we initally planned to service and connect with the community around us geographically – and will continue to do so as a priority – our online presence knows no bounds. It has allowed many to attend talks that they wouldn’t have been able to attend in person at our centre. And for that we are grateful.

Like many, we are in a state of flux and change and look forward – with some trepidation! – to what comes next: to finding our place and our way of working with communities to help each other and nature herself.  We have purchased a secondhand polytunnel and intend to run classes both in-person and online from it once we are ready to go and now we have secured further funding. We very much hope that you will continue to want to be a part of the work of The Pod Project and that you will want to join us a volunteers and participants both online and in-person when that is permissible and safe.

For those of you that have missed it we are still running our free online yoga and meditation classes Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. More news about forthcoming online activities in late February.  Stay safe and well everyone. Onwards!

Dismantling the secondhand polytunnel last year.