Nao vai ter golpe! / there with be no coup! I hope not… It’s a significant moment in history here in Brazil. Yesterday (31st March) Thousands protested in Largo Carioca, Rio de Janeiro, with ‘a festival for democracy’ in protest against the the ultra right wing political movement, that are trying to impeach the president.
As promised, the Wassail tales multimedia film that myself and Gwendolen Von Einsiedel made, is now online. It ran on the BBC website yesterday and made the most viewed list, racking up over 80,000 hits in it’s first day! take a look here: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-somerset-35669794
Some new images of mine are now live and available for licence on the top quality photography agency: 4 Corners. Sets from Buenos Aires, a Gaucho Estancia in the Argentine Pampa, and the historic gem in Minas Gerais, Brazil – Ouro Preto. Take a look here.
A bit of light relief for this Friday afternoon, we headed to a Wassailing down west-country way this week… The multimedia piece is ready and will be aired shortly. With Gwendolen Von Einsiedel on the audio, good work!
I Just got back from ‘the jungle’ refugee camp in Calais, where approximately 6,000 refugees from many different countries are currently stuck, trying to get in the UK by risking their lives jumping onto trains or into trucks. The camp has been there for years, but recently it’s numbers have greatly swollen due to the European refugee crisis.
I was down there with Arcadia and Calais Youth Alliance to deliver a fire engine, outlining the importance of emergency services there and how often the issues being faced there are ignored by the authorities.
What really struck me about being down there, was that there was very little presence from the large NGOs, and none by the UN, even though this is certainly a humanitarian crisis. Instead by far the bulk of those helping out with donations, time and ingenuity were independent people and grassroots micro charities that have been set up especially and on site, within recent months. Many of those present and running such operations are from the activist and festival circuit, using the skills learnt from many land protests, free parties, festivals and travellers sites, to help those most in need who are stuck between two of the richest countries in the World, with little option but to stay in the difficult conditions they face every day in the camps.
Happy bonfire night to everyone! Ah yes, that time of year that here in England we celebrate, or maybe just commemorate one of the boldest acts of anarchism (apparently) in our history, when Guy Fawkes tried to blow up Parliament.
But there’s another tradition that has been going on for about as long as that. Down in the Devonshire village of Ottery St Mary, put on the map because of the annual tar barrels: local men, women and children carry burning hot barrels of tar on their heads as tradition, yes really. Watch this space for an audiovisual piece coming very soon, for now a couple of pictures:
I’m particularly happy about these spreads, as after some time on the shelf, this story about my reggae pilgrimage to Jamaica finally found a home, laid out over 9 pages in the UK National Geographic Traveller. It’s nice to see a mainstream travel magazine running a feature like this, and they were pleased to do something a bit different too. In the shops now.
You can see a short video piece I did for the Carnival parade at Boomtown festival this summer here, take a look:
The short webdoc video that myself and Ruy Sposati made in Brazil earlier this year, is now published on New Internationalist
According to the Imazon research institute, the Brazilian lumber industry is valued at around $1.6 billion per year, and of this a whopping 76% is harvested illegally. The region’s Ka’apor indigenous community has been up against an ongoing battle with illegal loggers for many years.
Yes Rio has the beach and the jungle and the weather, and Sao Paulo is a concrete jungle like no other, on the surface an ugly grey metropolis, but dig a bit deeper and there’s a lot more to the place than meets the eye, it’s not all about looks you know…
I’m back in England at the moment, but I think of you often Brazil, Eu voltarei em breve meu amigo.