I'm a woman

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

Sunday, 1 May 2016

Tentacles of Malice. by Stevie the Semite Haston.

You don't have to get engaged in politics, you can just have a pint and talk about football, or climbing.  

Or you can ask your self why do certain papers ignore the Hillsborough decision. Why is there now an orchestrated attack on the Labour party being anti semitic. Well the answer is fairly simple. The media is self serving, it always has been. 

Get the Conservative Party back on the hook. Know the enemy. Hunt Hunt, get him into a corner, if 52 thousand Doctors can't, we need the help of the Media. Stop with the side issues already.

Saturday, 30 April 2016

A summer times blues. by Stevie happy Haston.

Its full summer today, hot as hell on an angry day. Down by the sea it was hot and humid and the sea looked limpid and you could see it sweating.

a pizzed snake local delicacy.

 I hate summer in the Med but I will try and stay on Gozo and Malta this year. I want to do a bit more swimming because I am so useless at it and my connection with the sea is strong. I hope to get stronger to do some harder projects and it needs planning help and a home base.

 I need some googles for the dog, he gets jealous and then worried if I disappear!

We, as in I Alex and Richard went to take photos of Bernd today, conditions were awful which doesn't bode well for the next 5 months. Its gonna be a long hot sweltering summer and I think I will train, train, climb, do my breathing, do my Kundalini yoga, dive, climb and Martial arts.

 I liked these people, not because they prayed for me, but because they seemed really happy. Glad to do their Cross training.

This week I am off to see my good friend Kyle who is working for the American guides Ass  in Sicily. A weeks holiday climbing, a busman's holiday, a bit of drinking and daft stuff with American friends.

 the start to Tirpitz 7b-hard.

I must thank Richard and Alex today for helping me out with photos, they were great, I wanted to abort because of the humidity. The se claimed two bits of gear! But we had a lovely day at Fruit Cake Land. We talked to a local old fisherman who talked about the route I used to solo out on. Some climbers have said the fishermen coulnt solo down this cliff but I saw them when I was young. Its a great route massively exposed - lots of climbers would shit themselves-especialy in bare feet with fishing tackle and a fishing trap.


Thanks Rich, hope you enjoyed today, thanks for the belay.

Thursday, 28 April 2016

Teaching, training, trying. by Stevie Haston.

Learning, growing, being.
Teaching -learning.
Ok start now-.

 in the film the Great Escape, Steve McQueen was riding one of these bikes with skill and √©lan.

The Great Escape that we all do nowadays is in escaping from our normal complicated and false world into our natural and prime ordial movement enjoyment mode.

 Rich, having counted the waves makes his escape, I the teacher got tangoed!

I have been very lucky this week, two good students willing and able to learn. Life should be this good and I would like life more. Two visits to the Underworld cliff to pay homage to the ancient stone.

 Rich above the sucking vortex, the very oesophagus of the Underworld.

Teaching, training, trying.

Part of a corroded carabiner.

 The Underworld eats forged metal, it trains minds and forges them stronger. If they escape, that is. There is a very solid bit of truth about getting good.The better you are the better quality routes you have access to. Great routes are unfortunately more numerous in the higher grades. 

Rich going down, down to sector Titan.

This morning I did my hour of stretching. This morning I did my hour of breath control. I will be better prepared…. I will do my preparation befor I go to see my buddy Kyle who will lavish fine food and wine on me, we will wake up when we want, we will be undisciplined boys, we will laugh and giggle, we will still go climbing every day, but I will certainly not do my breathing routines. So tomorrow I will do twice as much to compensate. The Great Escape from the great escape.

Plus a mamoth session of pull-ups.

Sunday, 24 April 2016

Feel the Bernd, by Stevie Socialist Haston.

 stripping Bernd by declimbing is a pain and a half.

Why does Gozo have huge roof climbs? You might as well ask why it has brilliant sunsets? 

 last afternoon.

My next project is a bigger roof than Bernd. Bernd was really big, a hundred feet of climbing in a roof, and brutal to boot. The next one on the list is bigger and harder, and some how I don't think it's possible for me. Age, conditions, opportunities will all conspire to do me in, and turn my desire to dust.


The sunsets here are a function of the sea, there's a reverberation, and reflection. At this time of year the sunsets are a bit bland. In the autumn they are very regular in their wondrous nature. The roofs I think are growing, getting bigger, slowly a micro move at a time. The sea is eating the foundations of the island, and just leaving the eaves of the roof. The conditions now will be awful until the end of October so I will start training to get to a higher level of fitness. The final big chunk of climbing on my next project looks to be a horrendous groove, followed by a small horizontal section of hands in an awkward crack, it looks like high degrees of flexibility are needed. So a bit of stretching then.

Bernd is the best route I'ave done, by Stevie Haston.

Jeff Camilleri is in this photo, thanks Jeff.

So thanks are due to several people. I have been very lucky in my climbing career not least because I am still alive, but because I have received much help from some lovely people. Although the climbing industry now resembles more Hollywood, or Bollywood, than the group of small passionate manufacturers I first knew, my thanks go out. Some are not there anymore, dead and gone. The sport is not the same, but some of the sportsmen are, and so are the people who help them.

Big thanks to Grivel, Scarpa, and Edelweiss.

I have worked in the Industry for years and years, I ave been getting help since I was a kid. So thanks all you people, the Londoners, the Welsh, the French the Italians.

Trying to salvage some of the kit, most of this is now trash.

I went through two ropes, finally opting for a 9.2mm to cut down on weight, and drag. Thanks all the people at Edelweiss.

I used Scarpa Furia, but went through a pair of Scarpa Stix, I needed a really good heel in the end which the Furia has, although I love the Stix.

I used lots of Grivel stuff, and there support over 25 years has been instrumental in me doing so much.

Thanks to Alex, and Jeff, and cousin Paul for the belays. 

Thanks to the wind for the good conditions, thanks to all those animals and plants that lost their lives to make that lovely Limestone/sandstone. Thanks to the pounding waves that formed this cave, thanks to the Bee eater birds that flew over me as I finished today. 

And if some of this reads like a grovel, it is! I need the support and the belays and the help.

Thank Bernd Arnold for the climbing in Elbsandstein and showing me that great place full of history and magnificence. Thanks for the name.

Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Paradise Lost, and Found, by Stevie Haston.


Had a great day with Antonia, I asked her where she wanted to go, "normal sports cliff, or special", we ended up at the Underworld, and Sector Titan, two of my favourite cliffs.

 The 45 meter pitch of Everlasting.

Antonia was a bit scared of height and abseils, so today she got 60 meter abseils, and a very free one on sector Titan.

 learning to trust the system 60 meters up an overhanging cliff.

Sun was cracking today, sea was helpful with the entry to the Underworld, and joy and serenity was reached easily. The climbs were tip top, I had forgotten how good sector Titan was.  Martin Mr Titanium bolts really helped kick that sector off. I showed Antonia where Martins excellent 7a went, she was gobsmacked. We both looked down from the chain, and were nearly sick, it don't look 7a! It is, pure continuity, very French, or Spanish, except in this case, it's got a bit of Gozo thrown in to spice it up.  

 the abb in to sector Titan, I think Antonia crushed my grigy on this abb!

How many days you got left in your life? Better use them, better climb, better make it to a sea cliff, or two, before you take the final ride to boring death.

 Antonia on the last route of the day.

Sector Titan still only has five routes, but they are all great, I'll have to wait a bit to do more, as I gotta take some time to get strong.

The fossil that just makes the last pitch even better.

Nice day, thanks Antonia.

Monday, 18 April 2016

The European Mystic Pizza, by Stevie Haston.

 some Londoners I met today.

Just had a couple of nice days climbing with Antonia from Bulgaria. I been helping her climb etc, I do like giving my limited knowledge of the gigantic sport of climbing to people. Its only when I see things through younger and less experienced eyes that I realise I have something good and valuable.

 Antonia understanding that abseiling is really not bad and indeed its great when you do it well and safely.

Anyway Europe and the disunited states there of, what a wonderful place it is when you think about it. Ease of travel, one currency and a group mentality that is indeed European and very rich in different cultures. I have friends from every where and the last few years have lessened those last vestiges of xenophobia that lurk darkly within ones soul like a virus.

 Hanging belay, all cool.

Today we worked on Abseling, a bit of rope work and trying to be relaxed in places where perhaps one might have been anxious before.

 sorry about the horizone I was talking to Antonia at the time.

We were climbing in the wonderful area of Weird Mielah and doing routes on the rock arch and then we walked to Fruit Cake Land to do Walking on Sunshine and a classic unknown route that I have rediscovered that is a fisherman's route. All beautiful, a bit hot, we checked out the swimming, the jelly fish are all ready out so we didn't jump in.

Antonia is from Bulgaria, Alex is from Germany, the dog is an Italian Greyhound that we found in a dustbin.

As I was belaying Antonia I saw a group of people carrying a cross so naturally I waved and they waved back. I didn't think much of it, but when I told the girls it was clear that they thought I had too much sun. Anyway an hour later we caught up with them, so my credibility with the girls was restored. The group had been very kind and said a prayer for me as I was climbing. Thet were over praying for my island. We had a nice natter, I thanked them for their prayers and went and had a Wiess Beer. Perfect Mystic Gozo day!