A couple of weeks back we traded at Sheffield Steam Rally for the third year running… Now this may seem a bit of a random event at first glance but we camp over for the weekend and it’s actually one of my favourites.
From a business perspective it’s fairly ordinary really – we sell enough for it to be worthwhile and usually pick up a commission or two, but nothing to shout about! – yet there is something in the air that always makes me feel completely relaxed… like any possible troubles or worries are a lifetime away… So I decided to try and pin-point why that place, that weekend, feels so special.
Perhaps it’s that we’ve hit lucky with the weather each year? It’s a windy spot but I love to breathe in the warm breeze and feel the dry grass under my feet. The smell of the smoke from the engines – although not so great from an environmental point of view! – creates a sense of nostalgia. I have always had a passion for history so it’s fascinating to see these amazing machines and the love and care that goes into preserving them.
Or perhaps it’s the most beautiful woods I think I’ve ever seen, that run alongside the event site – perfect for walking Blade (our dog!) each evening and simply losing ourselves for an hour or so!!
Anston Stones Wood is a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest and supports a variety of habitats, rare plants and limestone gorges. The huge rock faces within the woodland are like something out of a fairy tale and ‘Dead Man’s Cave’ was excavated in the 1960’s to reveal Ice Age tools and animal bones. It’s incredibly inspiring for my artwork and each year I add a few more photos to my catalogue of reference material!
But actually, if I dig down to the real nitty gritty…. the main reason I love this event is the same reason that motivates almost everything we do – an appreciation of a simple life!
Spending a weekend (or week) under canvas, without internet connection, lost from the rest of the world, gives us the opportunity to put things into perspective. To remember what is truly important in life and to adjust or refocus where necessary.
It’s the reason we have chosen to live the way we do and the driving force behind our plans for the future – and boy do we have some plans! …but more about that next time!
Thanks for reading and if you feel inspired to comment I’d love to hear from you.