I'm a woman

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

Friday, 23 June 2017

Ben 9a Moons Fore arms, by Stevie weak Haston.

Ia've just been at the Summer trade show in Germany, and it was great! Sound like Trump I hope not! People might suspect that the truth is somewhat different but hell yes I enjoyed it, the unpleasant things about work, politics, and being tired I ignored.

 Being in Germany made me love my home and love being alive..

Those people wishing to know about Ben Moons forearms should skip forewords. Seeing mates and old climbing buddies just seemed the special thing it always is.  So seeing people like Ben Moon and Paul Craven (among others ) just made me smile. They are younger than me but still like me keen as mustard! Paul is older than Ben and was an early member of the Stoney Middleton Woodshed dossiers club as was I. Ben is just Ben.

 The pieces of a life, a thousand piece jigsaw…

I promise to write a book, every body who asked OK. I need to dive and swim but I promise to write, especially as I now seem to be selectively forgetting. Oh the unbearable sweetness of selective forgetting.

 If you remember these things your one of the chosen tribe of Rock.

Good gear, good people, and stupendous beer, that was the summer show.

 One of the Lords of Font, Big Joe.

Climbing is so easy today, good gear, good info, etc, its amazing that people don't take up the gauntlet and crush (new words for old success), boots in particular-you should try climbing in old EBs, but more precisely slabs at Font.

Benedict Moons forearms..; such wonderful devices shame you can't buy them.

Ben Moon as some of you might know did a 9a just before his 50 birthday a few years ago, this year he has some fore arm issues and believe it or not is Trad climbing! 

More stuff soon, sorry I haven't been blogging but I got a lazy pencil.

Thursday, 1 June 2017

Another day another new route, by Stevie Haston.

 Kids , dogs , ropes, diving gear…

Did two hours swimming, but missed the fish! We saw a shoal of big fish from the top of the cliff, but they saw us coming ofcourse. We found a few swim throughs underwater, nice arches, and a few holes in the underwater cliffs. All good fun.

 Alex going for a vertical series of holes.

We did an old route called Aero Rambler 6b+, and brill, then we did a new one 6a+, and really good too.

Alex climbing the cliff after the swim.

There was some building rubbish thrown down one cliff, and a lot underwater, horrible to see how people trash their own back yard.

Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Lovely summer climbing, by Stevie shady Haston.

 the combination of wonderful rock the sea and a nice person…

Been climbing… its like the sign on the old guys fishing shop when it says "gone fishing be back at sunset or tomorrow". Anyway been climbing and free diving, seen a school of tuna, or big fish anyway as its early for Tuna, there were 24 of them, I counted them. I saw a very bid Barracuda two days running cruising along the cliffs, he looks old, you don't get old and big like him without being clever and wary.

 Antonia leading one of three routes in the day, all good but this one is best.

 Happy girl, sore toes from climbing and blisters but smiling..

Its summer time and the North Coast comes into its element,mellow to outrageous sea cliff climbing. Early morning it can be fresh with a sea breeze, some times its too humid without a wind, but its always bliss. 

 typical route 6a, a bit steep underneath…

Saw a turtle and a Barracuda today.

the big one, telephoto,she's 30 meters away.. 

Did one of my favourite routes today Hilwa ta Turk, its 6b+ and about 35 meters of climbing up an out of this world wall, looks crazy hard and is mostly on big holds, everything is sculptured sandstone and you finish on a few layback holds on a huge block.

"Stevie you said it was 5+ after the crux, it felt much harder", "em I lied", well what can I say, there is such a thing as too much information, 5 star route.

See you soon, my friend your stronger, bolder… and your enjoyment of rock makes mine more.

Friday, 26 May 2017

Happy Ramadan bruv, by Stevie Haston.

 some guys sitting under Palm trees, pre Ramadan munching.

Happy Ramadan to my Muslim friends. Tough month for you, its very hot, make sure your drinking water at night. I had a bit of religion today, went to put my mum and dad and Granny in a new place, they now look out over the sea, mind you they were looking out over the sea already. A change is as good as a rest they say, and they are certainly resting after their hard lives now!

 local bus, now a bit of a rarity.

It was odd touching the remains of dead people, it was comforting, if a religion brings you comfort and makes you live in a good way great. Religion and codes of conduct can be good. Lets concentrate on the good.

 our island which is starting to become desert and predicted to be so by 2100 due to Global warming, nobody is taking notice!

Don't you love flowers! 

re interning my mum and dad in one box, and my Granny Sunta -smaller box!

Not a bad day, went climbing, moved some relations and remembered to be part of the big brother and sisterhood that is the world. 

Thursday, 25 May 2017

The Puzzle of life, by Stevie puzzled Haston.

 Calm weather, stormy weather, weather!

Global warming is making more storms, and now there is a President in America who says that Global warming doesn't exist! What do you do? Start by complaining.

 Classic Gozo view, a bit different since the rock arch fell down!

There are too many cars on my island, it is a small island, we have sun power we should be electric.

 A book whose title says it all.

Climbing was part of my islands life, it isn't anymore, smoking, eating, watching other people live is the modern way. We are now a catering industry for richer people to have fun!
Where is our fun?

My Jigsaw puzzle, its soooo cool.

My last little birthday present arrived, it was a jigsaw puzzle of a thousand pieces, it really is great, and I love it. It comes from China! I wish it didn't! There are so many complex things in life, it's all a puzzle.

Please vote Labour in the UK -less puzzles with Labour. In Malta where there is another election, it is a bit more complex as the Labour party have been boiling in a scandal of corruption, if it helps my Maltese friends, I,ll say this, both Parties have similar promises, democracy has failed to make any difference between them, it's just a name thing! People make puzzles out of simple things to confuse people, it's called trying to con people. Malta's people face a difficult choice. The people of the UK face an easy choice, vote for all.    

Friday, 19 May 2017

It's horrible being human by Stevie sometimes more Haston.

 Chris visiting the Underworld.

25 mins yoga, felt hard!

 a remembrance of bad things past?

Some pull ups felt hard!

 Good things present.

Breathing exercises felt hard.

a window in your life is necessary.

Laughing at and hating certain politicians was all too easy.

Wednesday, 17 May 2017

The Tiranic Barracuda, by Stevie chubby Haston.

It's cool being 60, it's not cool being useless at climbing, and having a bad thumb. Still all that is better than being dead, one must maintain perspective.

 Optimistic hippy mode, vibe, thingy, peace to you all.

Went climbing, I thought it would be a hard day, but it was a bit pathetic, when your egos reach exceeds your ability, its bound to hurt.  

 cool people do cool things even if they are a bit pinko.

The North coast of Gozo has some class climbing but today I couldn't do it justice.

 The local Cop shop! Gozo style.

It was humid, I was fat, gravity was unkind as always.

 A card from a lovely young lady, thx  Lena.

We did seven routes but not the one I really wanted.

 the Titanic Barracuda laughed at me!

I even tried supper boots, nothing helped!

 Scarpa Chimaeras are the best boots I'ave ever had but they can't change a pigs ear into a silk purse!

Alex did some nice climbing but took a slight excursion into orbit when she was careless. Sector Vortex is cruel.
a fat old bloke, admitting defeat, heading to a more amenable sector

It looks like training is back on the menu boys.

Friday, 12 May 2017

60 and feeling frisky, by Stevie over the hill Haston.

 Dwarf Iris, tiny little things the height of my thumb.

Good wishes to every one, not exactly to all people but you might take my meaning. Hope the bad become good and the good give some of their goodness to others.

 Going for a swim under these big blocks.


 at one end of this block we saw two or three bolts, this route fell into the sea!

 Big old me, 60!

 How to burst a wet suit!

 Large fish trap!
Locally made, I week x 3 people.

With Manuel who made this trap, its very skill full job, my Grand dad used to make baskets and curtains but he couldn't make this.

Anyway just a big thank you to the people who read my blog, family, and friends, co workers, climbing buddies and even people I cross swords with. Be good, and if you are a crooked politician resign please!

Monday, 8 May 2017

Selective Amnesia, by Stevie (?) Haston.

It seems increasingly important to have at least a selective memory nowadays. If you climb in a country with only a few good routes, or live in a country with a corrupt government, how you see things, and how you grade, or take pleasure becomes plastic, and variable. Special glasses are now being sold by governments, guidebooks, and marriage brokers/dating agencies!

 slightly out of focus photo, no problem, put your glasses on.

A visiting climber the other day cornered me, and told me my grades were not right! I was a bit hurt, and I explained they were correct as far as I could make them, and I had a bit of experience in this department. Still he wanted to inflate them by at least a grade, I replied "be my guest"-you see, that was easy.
If you go to some places you get holiday grades, here I am afraid you get grades, bog standard, good old French Boux grades, you know, like where they were invented! Fake grades now, what ever next.

 Looking up the 140 meters of Bernadino F.

Grading is hard, it's obviously a bit subjective! On the big cliff the other day, I had some slight anxiety for a few seconds as I started the four abseils, and when I started on lead on the second pitch. Normal fear, changes grades, abnormal fear changes grades abnormally.

 Solly showing no fear and being strong, later that day affected by the sun he slowed down!

In France a great country that I do miss, they had an adjectival grade which was on top of the Tec grade, a bit like the old UK system, I loved it. The top grade was Abdominal, or ABO for short-oh how I loved that grade, I used to seek them out when I was fit, and felt the sap rising. Nowadays I would probably collapse into a catatonic state if I was teleported onto one. Grading climbers as I used to say, might be easier than grading climbs, and is just as applicable.

 the sharp feature above Solly has been climbed, Bernadino goes to the left, and belays about where the rope is!

Kindness should be graded, empathy should have numbers, we should all have them tattooed on our foreheads so we can judge each other a bit easier, what do you think?

 Dustin helping out, he wants to do that route he said, but its a bit too hard I think.

Is love graded? I suppose it might be, by some people. The prostitute lover of a previous Prince of Wales kept a stud book grading her lovers, but sadly that has disappeared, I guess it would, wouldn't it. It was alleged she got off a murder as well, due to having, em, forgive the pun, connections!

flowers should be graded?

The sun was shining a bit too fiercely, but the sensation was deep, the flowers looked very good by the car, the beer tasted extra good, and I slept the sleep of the just. How good was that? 9 out of 10, only joking! 

Saturday, 6 May 2017

Executioners Song Fernandez, by Stevie Haston.

Solly's grandad got executed on 18th of July 1938. He was killed, murdered call it what you will on Sollys dads birthday, who was six years old that day! Sollys dad always hated his birthday, because it reminded him obviously of his fathers murder by the Fascists. It was no coincidence that he was killed on his sons birthday, it was just another added bit of nastiness.

 Climbers bitch and moan a lot mostly about nothing.

Anyway some time ago I did a route, and called it Bernardino Fernandez, to commemorate Mr Fernandez, and it was a dare I say, it a very great route. Today Solly the grandson did it, and he was happy-so was I.

 I need a manicure.

Climbers are very shallow kinds of people for the most part nowadays, if we have any character, we hide it in the hills, and cliffs, and mountains, we don't do anything with it. Sometimes people are called on to sacrifice a bit more than a broken nail or two.

 The gear for the route, it's 4 rope lengths. 140 meters but on a engaging cliff.

We went for a swim at the bottom of the cliff, cold water concentrated the mind for the route, its fairly serious, with some dodgy rock that needs delicate handling. 

 the sea is ultramarine, its another life.

Life is very tough for some people, and very serious, that's why years ago, I decided to grab a few handfuls of paradise before I died. Hopefully I have also added to other peoples lives a bit with some lovely routes. The sacrifice that some people made years ago, and still do today is beyond me, I don't have the commitment. I am indeed a fair-weather politician.

 Solly abseiling down in a semi religious way.

The route is 5a, 5a+, 6c,6a, and it's a bit engaged, and it'
s a bit hard. I got roasted in the sun while Solly made a pigs arse out of a silk purse, on the last pitch. No complaints-there were beers on top-thanks to Alex and Dustin.

 Solly on the 6c pitch-it might be 6b+ but is scary!

The rock in some places is like frozen salted snow. But the climbing is really wonderful, and it takes a big well shaped buttress.

 I was on this belay for a while!

One day many people will do this route, it's the best multi pitch in the Maltese Islands, with the approach by boat it's even better-a great day.

throttling it.

This is what I think of the Uk, and USA government, without the complicity of these governments, the Fascists wouldn't have got in power in Spain, and they would not have stayed in power as long. The simple story of Spain is that Franco got in, but he was let in. Germany used Spain to kill and train its budding Airforce, while Russia put in forces on the other side, does this sound all too familiar. There were also volunteer forces including the famous International Brigade I even have known a few of there grandsons. Anyway, because of the fear of the dreaded Communist Franco was allowed to get in and allowed to stay in! There is a mirror of this going on now in the East with Turkey, and Israel. But you came here I suppose to look at climbing photos, well you can look, you can ignore my words!