I'm a woman

I'm a woman
Photos copyright Laurence Gouault
No reproduction on other media without the photographer's permission.

Monday, 23 April 2018

Paradise regained, by Stevie content Haston.

Gozo is feeling good, Gozo is looking good, Gozo felt, how you say in your language, "garumpha mogglespiffing!" Its at its best, hunting season is over (thank all the gods), it's still green with flowers, and I saw a huge heron, flapping over me, and two big adult serious Baracudas in the water!

 Christina and Mandy today enjoying their first sea cliff climbing!

A slightly full day! Early stuff, then beat the tourists to the cliff to get the silent mood thing going. Perfect routes!

 Mandy going wow!

The Baracudas cruised by, the ladies missed the first one and I was loath to talk about it in case they thought it was a fisherman's tale, but then the second one of the pair, came along to give me some credibility! Thank you Mr Baracuda! He even took a small fish! 

 Cristina going "wow, can we swim here?"

The North coast was really fine, but I had to rush over to the south coast for a swim with Barbara. A bit different from Irish cold water, eh?

Barbara cruising.
So a nice day, tomorrow Sector Titan early before it turns into an inferno.

Sunday, 22 April 2018

Cliffs below, cliffs above. By Stevie Haston.

Today was a busman's holiday for me, I went Kayaking, with the family. 

I been climbing a lot but my shoulder cuts like a knife into a nerve at the moment, so I thought I'd try for a different angle on the pain today!  

 Your supposed to listen to your instructor, so I duly didn't, and capsized! The Instructor  complimented me on my escape from a capsized Kayak, and then used me as an instructional example.

We had two instructors in a small group, very good, we were all treated superbly, but hey I know these guys, and they would do the same for anybody. Nice instructors Will and Michael.

 A crazy rock Arch, lots of caves, and some mirror like surfaces with a strange wide apart swell from time to time on the east side.

 Me and Will picked up a bit of rubbish, but there is so much because this tourist site is such a glorious honey pot. It really needs a floating dustman on a jet ski rather than part time volunteers.

 It was a fairly big day for me, run with the dogs in the early morning, then the Comino classic Kayak journey, then an hours swimming, and free diving.

 Florence from Belgium.

I swum around the east facing Santa Maria Caves, and the swell made it pretty hairy. Lots of bubbles and fizz in the water. I took some air cave canals slots at a rush before declining head room due to the swell made the odd dive compulsory! A bit too exiting. I did the subterranean arch, and Zorro cave. Zorro cave I was too scared to do from one side because I couldn't really see the entrance due to bubbles, and fizz. So I looked at it from the other side, and miscalculated the current, and incoming swell. Result was a dramatic stop half way through, where I was diving against a glass wall! Funny, obviously in retrospect. 

Lovely day as usual thanks to Gozo Adventures and Cornil.

Wednesday, 18 April 2018

The War must go on forever, By Stevie Pacifist Haston.

The War is not made to be won, it's meant to go on for ever! If you haven't read 1984 you need to, if you have read it and don't understand it, get one of your children to. If one of your children can't, you shouldn't have had them. I make no apologies for being upset about the failure of our governments to act in the correct way. I make no apologies for being angry and actively getting pissed off at the stupidity of todays majority, or their total abdication of morality in favour of football, food and digital fucking.

 I love the disappearing beauty of this planet and the disappearing people who want to enjoy it.

 Exploding  a wet suit!
 A bit of bare foot climbing, makes you appreciate climbing dancing shoes, but is nice from time to time!

I have been climbing almost constantly, not diving much. But yesterday I had to fit in some climbs, and a clean up. One was for the War against passing out, t'other was against plastic and rubbish in the sea!

 You need to read not bleed.

I went climbing with a guy called Patrick, who has a slight problem with being awake! The poor climber passes out when climbing occasionally! Gripes. Anyway he wanted to do a sea cliff classic, and I said yes. We did some climbs then an abseil, then a classic climb above the sea, very exposed etc. His smile was so big it illuminated the sea arch on this otherwise dull day. Brill. Motto of the story, full concousness isn't all its cracked up to be, just ask big politicians.

 25 Divers and a few on the beech with Xlendi divers on Gozo. Another clean up was done on the North Coast with a big beech clean up and more divers!

 So a quick change in a telephone box and into diving gear for the clean up. I forgot my gloves, and it got cold on an hour long dive collecting rubbish.

We saw some barracudas, one pipe fish and a fish I didn't recognise, it looked like another red sea fish!

The war on rubbish will never be won, it's not meant to. People earn money out of  lots of bad things, Plastic is made from oil,  oil is the prime mover of armies! Plastic is oil, oil is money. Get on the right side please.

Tuesday, 27 March 2018

Grivel Gravity 35 by Stevie Haston.

Grivel Gravity 35 rucksack.
Hard wearing practical sac capacity 35 litters.

 Grivel make a super ultra light weigh 28 litters this is a good bit bigger and made of a much more robust fabric. If you want to last out a scotish winter or a few chamonix grant routes you really need a heavier fabric like this one. Me, I'll always go for light, but you know I don't buy my packs!

 More than enough padding for the kind of load you will have in it. This pack obviously carries well, much better than the bigger Grivel Rocker I reviewed recently. This is not a sport crag pack this is an all-round pack you can haul this, its not indestructible but it is robust, in normal usage it should last you a good amount of time. Chest strap and light removable waist strap. It can be sleek and very trim if you take things off. 

 Roll top fastening.
A small back pocket contains a top compression strap, it works good for holding a rope over the top of the back, and a jacket that kindda thing.

The yellow interior lining I thought a bit extra, but its utility in finding things in a black bag is marked!Note a stiffening rod, the bag angs open it doesn't totally collapse like some.

 Paces to put straps, these straps are not provided, but the sown daisy chain is a good idea, leaving it up to you where to put extra straps. Snoopy loops are good on this daisy chain for ice axes.

 The interior yellow for visibility of objects, two pockets contain two bits of foam for stiffening which help open the sac up and give it shape. A minimalist would maybe want more than these to vivi on!

So its a cool looking black rucsac. What is it good for-everything! I think it goes with the city crowd as much as the mountain crowd. Its a good size for some work stuff and a pair of shoes for the wall. It is ok on the back of a bike, a hike, or a day on the mountain.

Inside the quick see where your gear is panel, this is a doubled zip entry. theres a back pocket for money passport etc, a couple of gear loops, it's a good feature.

Weight Grivel Air Tec 28 litre 900 grs. 
Grivel Gravity 35    1100 grs.

Monday, 26 March 2018

Are you lazy, by Stevie Lazy Haston.

Are you lazy? Yes of course you are! Did you walk the dog properly, did you clean a new route, no I didn't, mea culpa.
I wrote a bit today for a book, a short 1000 words. OK Callum! I promised it, its done. It's about an old route of mine called Tonight at Noon. My old girl friend left me that day I first tried it, fed up with my antics, she buggered off leaving me the route as consolation.

 Blood and skin, tooth and claw.

Routes are bloodied stone, they are long, or short tales, they are paintings, they are fights and sometimes they are symphonies. Sometimes they aren't worth doing!

 Have you done your pull ups?

A friend visited his mum with his dog. The dog had to be walked by the mum, because the son was working. 30 mins to an hours walk cured the old mum of high blood pressure. If you are too lazy to cure your self by correct treatment, buy junk medicine and get other complications from those chemicals. 

 Have you read this, its a bit of hard work but it makes you think we are not trying.

What ails many places today is that the doctors of our government are quacks! Learn to recognise the difference. It is fairly easy in some countries, making porn stars the topic of politics debate seems to me to drag things into the gutter. Is it worse than selling arms? No it isn't. Even if you work in an arms factory think a little, maybe change your job. Changing where you live is hard today with Brexit and immigration laws, but  changing the fabric of your country is supposed to be your right.

 Have you read this? Its essential reading. You shouldn't be allowed to vote if you haven't read this book, and at least another 15. Wanting a gun, or less tax on booze is not eligibility for voting. Having love and some knowledge is. 

History, we ignore it at our peril, this is a good read and easy to boot. It reminds me  that one persons success is mostly at the disadvantage of some one else.

The old idea of a healthy mind and body seems to be disappearing. While a very few exercise their bodies (mainly one hastens to add for cosmetic reasons) how many exercise the brains? It is funny being involved in sport even a great one like climbing. If I had put in as much work into my character and into good works as I have done into my climbing, I would guess I might be approaching saint hood by now. Next time around in my next life if the planet is still here, I won't be lazy.

Friday, 23 March 2018

Against my wishes, by Stevie Haston

Just did an interview for UKclimbing I don't know why I do interviews anymore. On this occasion Iam doing it for a very talented ex climber whose first ascents I loved and who I also liked. Iave done more interviews than any UK climber except for Chris Bonnington, and I used to criticise people like Lord Bonnington, or Sir Chris, or what ever toss pot stupid royal stamp of approvable these kind of people have in front of their names. Hasty hash tag Stevie Haston I aint. So Andy Pollit if you make me look like something other than a cuddly yoga and peace loving man I will come to australia and put spiders under the toilet pan lid!

 Churchill that arch murderer than the UK honours once said "History will love me, because I will write History". Is Mr Haston the only climber worth his salt who hasn't written his own version of History?

 My friend Alex underwater.

 History is a commodity, and cult status is now easily achieved through social media, today you don't have to do anything, and indeed you can't, whats the point anyway, just comb your hair smile with bought teeth and pretend. Its all about clicks.  Cliks rule the world, so my interviews are normally about clicks,  not my yoga. Strangely almost to contradict this I have had an interview in a yoga magazine, and I am very  proud of it. Unlike one particular climber sponsored by yoga clothing, I actually do yoga! The ability of an ordinary person to affect laws, or resist chopping down even a tree in Sheffield has been taken away from you. Climbing is like that, you still can't climb in the himalaya without being rich and getting involved in the snakes and ladders of fame and personality contests.

It fell down, the Maltese people want to rewrite history and replace it with a false one. Fake news, Fake Rock arches.
Dancing or climbing?

Has the world of climbing been so dumbed down,  or is it rose tinted belay glasses I am looking through.
Give me the serenity to change the things I can change and bugger the rest.

This year I will do my best to produce lots of knew routes, spread the joy, increase knowledge and be a happy sharing person. That is the interview I do with myself every day I do yoga.

Thursday, 22 March 2018

Admiring others, by Stevie Haston.

 Pointing to a brilliant  very loooong 7c.

 beautiful chipped stairs.

 Stairs again, different ones.

A big group of kids (young people) lots of climbing done, they loved it, makes me proud to be able to share a passion.

As I look back through the years there are so many people to admire. I often wonder where people are and what they are up to.

Looking at this commemorative plaque always makes me feel small and puny. I nearly always stop to pay homage to this unrepeated swim. What do you think? The plaque is on the way back from one of my favourite cliffs to climb and I regularly dive where Nicky landed.

 Swimming more than 90 km, can't be easy, doing 8b with a rope sometimes has been very reasonable for me, and boulder problems even hard ones are over in the blink of an eye and the flick of a wrist!

 Celia and myself in the days when we used to jump off bridges, cables, and high things. Also in the days when I wore scarfs!

Toe is a bit trashed still, putting on climbing shoes hurts, and pressing up on foot holds kills.