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Isle of Wight Green Gym - Official Blog.

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Wednesday, 13 January 2021

Wed 13th Jan 2021 - GG Virtual Session # 029.


The Team GG members who made it along to the Zoom meeting on Wednesday were....

As one might imagine, the first topic of conversation at this meeting was CORONAVIRUS 😏. To date, only one group member is lucky enough to have actually been vaccinated so we are all keeping our fingers crossed that the rollout goes as per the government's plan. The sooner we can get our Wednesday mornings back to some sort of normality then the happier we will all be 😀. The discussion then focused on the odds of actually catching it, here on the Island, but that subject was declared too morbid so was skipped over pretty quickly..! Many of us had seen Sunday's Countryfile programme on the BBC which showcased the sort of voluntary work that GG is involved with and highlighted the mental health benefits of working outdoors, particularly in woodlands. It is a shame that this programme was shown during a lockdown period as it may well have influenced a few more people to come along to our sessions. 

As many of us are now relying on packages being delivered and collected from home, there was  some discussion about the performance of various couriers.  Not wishing to get myself sued or my Google account terminated, I won't mention  company names but there are certainly winners and losers in this competitive market.....just ask Bob the Weather. My personal gripe is those companies that refuse to mail things, using Royal Mail, because we are an "off-shore island". This subject broadened into the merits of buying locally, rather than online, and most agreed that we do (under more normal circumstances) prefer the local option.

Mark mentioned a rather strange package he had received containing a store card and I recounted the story of my over-delivery of items from Amazon.. I will bring said items along to a "real" GG session for redistribution to interested parties.

That's about all for this week, thanks for taking the time to read this and please take care, we still have difficult times ahead 😷.

Wednesday, 6 January 2021

Wed 6th Jan 2021 - GG Virtual Session # 028.

Members of Team GG who made it along to the first virtual session of 2021..... 

Well everyone, here we are in a new year and also a new Covid-19 lockdown...😏. It doesn't seem likely that we will be holding any outdoor sessions any time soon so Wednesday mornings will have to be Zoom conferencing for now. 

Having sorted the formalities of wishing each other a Happy New Year, it was straight into the topic of the day - Covid-19..! Fortunately, it hasn't been an issue for any of the above although several have relatives who have been unfortunate enough to catch the dreaded thing. There does seem to be some positive news about the over 80's getting the vaccination here on the Island so, fingers crossed, it might trickle down to us "youngsters" sometime soon so we can get out and about again 😀. Do I miss standing in One Horse Field on a wet, cold day in January, sad as it sounds YES...I really do. Anything to escape being stuck at home.

Much of our meeting this week revolved around the topic of bird sightings across the Island with everything from Merlin, Ibis, Short Eared Owls, Spoonbills through to some of the more common varieties found on the garden bird feeder. Mark pulled up a photo from a web page that might be of interest to bird watchers in the group, try this link  Isle of Wight Birds. When we are all out on our once a day, local to home, socially distanced exercise period it might be worthwhile looking out for some of the more unusual birds.

Well Team, that's all for session # 028 - stay safe and try to get along to the Wednesday morning Zoom sessions.... the more the merrier.

Wednesday, 30 December 2020

Wed 30th Dec 2020 - GG Virtual Session # 027.

 Team GG stragglers at the end of 2020...!

I am sure many of our readers will be glad to see the back of 2020...what a year..!!! Our last Zoom meeting of 2020 started with a discussion about something very topical, Covid isolation. Two of the group had recently been informed that they had been in contact with someone who had tested positive and had to self isolate. I suspect that a few more of us will be subjected to this before they get around to vaccinating everyone. 
The next topic of conversation was that old favourite, the weather. Storm Bella seems to have kept many of us awake on Boxing Day night - including power cuts and structural roof damage 😟. The weather theme continued with flooding at Ryde and some of the harsher winters when the Island actually got some snow. Couldn't end the year without mentioning our wonderful new floating bridge so we had a chat about a suitable crossing point for a Trans-Media Bridge (doesn't that sound grand..!) What with certain areas being covered by SSSI's and a council that isn't renowned for making snap decisions, I doubt that I will be driving across it in my lifetime 😏.

Well Team Green Gym, that is about it for 2020. We hope you all managed to salvage something out of Christmas and that everyone will be back out enjoying the countryside sometime in 2021.

Wednesday, 16 December 2020

Wed 16th Dec 2020 - Shide Quarry, Newport. GG # 836.

Easy to spot where the team were working..!

A good turn-out for the last session of 2020.

 And so to the final GG session for 2020 - what a year it has been...! With as many virtual sessions as "real" ones, we have all had a steep learning curve as far as technology goes 😀. As nice as the Zoom sessions have been to enable us to stay in touch, there is no getting away from the fact that being outdoors doing something useful is a fundamental part of Green Gym. 

This week we continued last week's task, scrub clearance down in the chalk quarry at Shide. Due to the present Covid regulations, it was not possible to hold our traditional Xmas party but almost everyone brought along their own drinks and refreshments which were consumed whilst keeping socially distant. You can see from the photos above that it was a rather grey day, with little wind, hence the bonfire smoke lingering in the bowl of the quarry but there was still a good turn-out. Well done to all those who managed to attend.

Make sure that you look after yourselves over the upcoming holiday season and we  hope to see everyone back at Green Gym in 2021 (it just HAS to be better than 2020..!).