So my first gig as qualified herbalist is appropriately wild and muddy and spent at the Green Gathering, a luscious mixup of rainstorms, rainbows, huge insect bites and boiled thumbs, blacksmiths and Brixton tea parties, dreads and dancing, and a lot of cider. Delicious still cider out of plastic canisters. Never been to this fest before and indeed had not been to one for a while so it was a joyous return.
See pics on Facebook here

First experience of festival first aid...

Dedj and her crew are a marvellous bunch with a long-time experience of festival first aid and I had a great welcome to my new family of herbalists – ‘Big-up good-natured people who love and know plants’ to quote our friend Oscar from the crew food tent. It is awesome and warming to feel I am entering this world and community especially now knowing it has many quality and very funny folk in it. The fun/work balance was negotiated skilfully and it was rewarding to be in a setting where using herbs was the norm and most comers to the first aid tent were sympathetic to, and more often, very appreciative of this medicine. It was somehow reminiscent of a very different place, my father’s family Dawakhana – a Unani medicine house in northern India – whose location on one of the busiest little thoroughfares I’ve ever seen means a continuous flow of people accessing this affordable treatment, for almost the last 100 years. A colourful English-Welsh hippie festival and a bustling Muslim brass-producing Indian town in the foothills of the Himalayas are not on the surface similar – and yet a very like response to herbal medicine issues from their people. And why? I can only perceive that a large part of the impetus comes from the fact that it helps. A number of first aid tent visitors, as well as asserting their ideological support of herbal healing, said that their experience of our treatment had been effective in the past and so they remembered it and returned. Of course this shouldn’t be, and isn’t, surprising for me as a herbalist after these years of study experience – but it is brilliant to see it in practice!

Much looking forward to doing it again and learning more hands-on skills for this acute side of things, a new experience for me after clinical experience in the longer-term approach to treatment. Bring on the duck poo sprain ointment and the plantain dressings…

3 thoughts on “First experience of festival first aid…

  1. Anna

    Go Rasheeqa, go Rasheeqa
    Working with flower essences, finding out the magic in them. Making wormwood flower, jasmine flower and maybe vervain flower (they are tiny) this week. Also doing long drawn out plant study on Vervain, growing on my doorstep…
    And otherwise also discovering the healing powers of eating many fresh figs and brambles, pears and apples from the garden :)

    Reply
    1. rasheeqa Post author

      O wow! That is nice! An interesting new direction. I’d like to hear what happens with them. ahhh I’m jealous of you all there in the fresh summer fig mountains… and one day I’m coming to find you. You know I have a parcel that Amber and I prepared for you a looong time ago with some little gifts for Livia – and never sent it yet! O dear. Can you mail me your address there again? Much love and happy fruity wishes XXX

      Reply
  2. Paula

    Hey I would love to pick your brain on herbal first aid at music festivals. Me and some fellow herb students are trying to put together some herbal first aid tents at festivals her in canada. Email me if you can paula_huntley@hotmail.com

    Reply

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