The stall at the Black Gully Festival was nested between other stalls that were sharing information – next door to the Armidale Tree Group that was starting a drought monitoring project asking people to take photos of stands of trees so they can audit which local trees make it through this unprecedented event.
The community is really starting to feel the water shortage strongly and, as such, CoWS is becoming a space to reflect on that together. I planned to run some discussion groups during the day – it wasn’t that kind of event and no one showed up to the planned discussions. What was well received though were my two zines – “A Field Guide for Weathering” and “Drought Friendly Hairstyles”. These, especially the latter, were an antidote to the fairly gloomy mood. Drought was deepening and the fires had, at that point, been burning for well over a month. It is hard to laugh, but also feels important (but you can’t force it!).