So I know you’re all anxiously waiting to hear how my vision quest/fast went (good news, I’m still alive) but part 2 is gonna talk you through the preparation stage first.
Obviously one of my random internet searches had brought my attention to vision fasts and various programmes you can pay to attend. After discussion with a friend they basically said “so you pay this money to people for them not to feed you or give you any accommodation, sounds like a good way to make money”. Hmm, maybe you’re right, I can do this on my own.
[Searches internet] A few YouTube videos later and reading of the book “Quest: A guide for creating your own vision quest; Denise & Meadow Linn” determines I can indeed carry out my own vision fast.
I start journaling and writing about my intentions for my quest. But where the heck was I going to find my sacred spot in nature? [More internet searching]. This time Googling sacred wells in Yorkshire (as you do). I find one that is written about in a text that makes it sound magical. It doesn’t come up on Google maps but has reference to some ordnance survey co-ordinations. [More internet searching] This time trying to figure out how to use these co-ordinations. I download an OS app. Cool, I figure I can find it and set out a days adventure.
The walk up the hill feels good, right even. Between using my Google and OS maps I see I am getting close. I take a right down a track and a deer crosses my path. It is quiet and the story of the well location so far seems accurate. Ah, the well! But nothing like my imagination or the story would have me believe it to be. Nice view though. Back to the search for THE spot.
On the walk back another deer crosses my path. This time, this one stopped to stare at me before running into the bushes. Decision made. I will follow the deer. I didn’t have to go too far before I found my space. A small clearing with two trees perfectly positioned for me to hang my hammock. It felt cosy, homely. Awesome, what a success to find my spot so easily.
Those who know me know that I am one of those hangry sort of people. So a 72 hour fast was a big ask. I decided to opt for a ketogenic diet (high fat, very low carb) the week before the fast so that I was already glycogen depleted and fat adapted, which would hopefully reduce any hunger/carb cravings I may have. I also tried to eat in excess the few weeks before to put on some weight to account for what I might lose (I wasn’t successful in doing this but it wasn’t without trying). Apologies to those who only have to sniff some butter to put on weight, but I was literally chomping on blocks of cheese and spooning the peanut butter in.
I cut out all caffeine a few days before D-Day. It was already going to be a challenge without having to deal with any potential withdrawals and headaches. Luckily I’m not that much of an addict to notice the difference of going without but I wasn’t taking any chances. A lot of water we consume in the day comes from food so I made sure I stocked up on some electrolytes too. This would ensure better hydration than water alone and also help to avoid nasty headaches.
Packing list: Layers (the forecast was cold & rain), hammock, tarp, sleeping bag, water, electrolytes, journal/pen, quest book (for reference), torch, baby wipes, rubbish bag, sage (for smudging and cleansing my sacred space obvs), emergency Lucozade, small shovel, scissors, extra string. Wow! So much STUFF!* This was more than I was expecting for a minimalist expedition.
That’s it then. I’m ready. Let’s do this.
To be continued…..
*I hate stuff. I’m continuously trying to de-stuffocate. I want to live a simple, minimal life. But I always seem to have so much of it. I’m currently preparing to move into a small van and this is certainly going to limit the amount of STUFF I have. But this is another story to be told…
This was the magical sacred well I had read about, the view from the well and my hammock tress. These were taken on my first expedition to the location. I didn’t have my phone turned on to take any pictures of my set up, though I wish I had.