Thursday 28 June 2012


One of the barriers I have had to break through since my move to Galicia is a lack of confidence in my own abilities. I think that this is endemic in the lifestyles of many. The current system educates us to be 'consumers' and that means that we are sold gadgets and services that we are told we can not do without. Unfortunately it starts young, with the education system only giving us a limited skill set in preparation for the job we will later have (if we are lucky). We are told that we should buy ready prepared food, buy everything ready made, leave everything to the professionals.
It took me weeks to pluck up the courage to have a go at my first attempt at plumbing. This involved fitting a desperately needed outside tap pictured below.
I was frightened that I would create leaks where none had existed before. I soldered several joints and it has proven to be a brilliant success. In a similar vein, Tim knocked in some fence posts for me and I created the turkey run out of scraps of chicken wire and old electric fencing tape. It had to be high because they are good fliers when young. Below are the turkeys in their run from my bedroom window.
My neighbours here are typical of many Galicians, they have multiple skills, many still grow their own vegetables, kill and process their own meat, make wine and distil a strong spirit from the skins and pips. They keep ancient tractors on the road and some still use working horses and oxen in the fields. Their skills with orange baler twine are legendary, using it to hold up trousers, secure fences, weaving it into ropes with multiple uses and even using it as a lead when taking the house cow out to graze in the evenings.

I just need to take inspiration from my small successes and get on to the next task, there is no substitute for just having a go.

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