I'm in need of one, for about 9 or 10 days.
Although I've not been blogging so much lately, I've tried to keep active online as I work through all the patterns and articles and projects that I have on the go. But in the run up to the EU referendum, I just don't think I'm going to have the capacity to keep up appearances.
To live as we do, we use the Freedom of Movement, a right all members of the EU have. Aran was so well looked after when he fell critically and acutely ill thanks to our EU health insurance cards. If the UK leave the EU come the 23rd June, we'll be faced with some very difficult choices. Residency in Italy (or any other EU country for that matter) isn't an option for us because there is no address, no bricks and mortar and neither of us have jobs there - my business remains very much UK based. And prejudice in the UK against our sort is a whole other ball game. Having just fought for 3 whole years (and won) against hate just to keep our community and spaces, I don't think I have the energy left to do it again. I will of course, but I'd rather not have to.
And reading so much hate and propaganda online is doing me no good. I'm sure it's not doing anyone any good, but right now I have to look after me, us.
Naturally, I'm voting to remain. Not just for ourselves, but because I don't want to see the UK cut itself off with nothing standing in the way of a hard right government. I dread to think how people who aren't as lucky as us will survive; trusting a Tory government with the state has never been wise. I'm voting to remain for all my immigrant friends, who are *not* the enemy, who work so hard, contribute to their local communities and have been denied their say about their futures. The EU has many, many faults, but if we want to change it, we have to be part of it. We are stronger together.
In the last few years I've spoken less and less about our lifestyle and travels, and that's understandable given the legal battle we've faced as a community. It's also understandable given the rise of the far right across Europe, and knowing how badly travellers and outsiders have been and still are treated. We faced eviction before, the threat of losing our vehicles, our spaces and lifestyle and animals, and we could face losing them again. I cannot begin to explain how much our world will be turned upside down should the worst happen... we fall between the cracks enough as it is, and we'll just fall deeper down. Aran could lose his life, his friends, his freedom, the things he knows as home, and the thought of putting him through that breaks my heart. And I can't bear to see people I know and care for actively voting for this.
I'll try and stay active in my Ravelry group - that is such a peaceful, friendly space and I'm incredibly grateful for all the support on offer. And I'll aim to keep up with Instagram, as that too feels like a safe place. But for the sake of my sanity, please know that anything that posts to Twitter or Facebook will be automated, and I'll not be engaging for a while.
In the meantime, meet Howler. He's been living on the Yard for a while as a stray and being cared for by a friend. But he needs a home, and our friend can only manage feeding so many cats. And seeing as the Princess tolerates him, we offered him a home.
He's younger than we first thought, and is the most docile thing. He's another Jimmy type, a wanderer, a vagabond who needs a human and a decent regular meal, but will always need his freedom. He couldn't be more opposite to Princess Fi, who really needs to live in a house with permanent residents and no other cats within a 2 mile radius. Howler is the perfect site cat. We've had him fixed at the vets, and we need to take him back this week for a Herpes jab, as there's some damage to his eyes from previous infections. Otherwise though, he seems to be in good health and has very quickly gotten used to this new adventure.
The Princess still gets a bit sulky if he's indoors too much, especially at night. But they've only clashed twice and even that didn't amount to much - this morning during their 'encounter' there were no claws or a hint of a hiss, it was more like 3 seconds of fisty-cuffs. This is progress for the Princess, believe me!
And now I'm going to have a glass of wine or 3, let out the tears that really need to fall, and hope that tomorrow I can pick up with my work and enjoy being creative again.