Ros Briagha's website
Briagha is a community leader
who ran OakDragon,
an outdoor educational organization that brings people back to Nature.
She is a Wiccan teacher and ceremonialist who is also adept at divination.
Book a reading
What is Geomancy?
Strata Florida June 2005
Mitchells Fold June 2005
Coed_Hills September 2005
Gower December 2005
Gors Fawr December 2005
Callinish June 2006
Dragons Flight June 2007
The Eight Festivals
is Ros Briagha?
deep in the Welsh hills is a small community of folk seeking to
live lightly on the Earth, owning land in common, sharing space together,
called Tipi Valley. This has been my home for the last few years, and
living there has taught me much about how to work with nature, and also
how difficult this can sometimes be!
Most folk there have some kind of garden, ranging from a few
flowers in tubs around their door, to full scale vegetable beds supplying
nearly all of their needs. Several people have ducks and chickens, and
there are goats too, who really enjoy their freedom to browse among
the willows and brambles. Not to mention the horses ! To eat a meal
of fresh vegetables, eggs and goats cheese, sitting in our beautiful
meadow, far from roads and pollution, is a rare and wonderful experience
in this crowded island we live in.
Living in a tipi means that all ones needs have to be sorted
out personally — no services to provide heat, light, water or
cooking facilities. The whole process of living becomes a dance with
Nature, receiving her bounty in a very direct way, and in this article
I thought I would focus on the water, the most crucial aspect of survival.
We get our water from one of the various wells dotted about the
valley, some of which are very old, dating back to the time when monks
and pilgrims travelled through on the green lane from Liandeilo to Talley
Abbey. Others have been dug out by members of the present community,
and all seem to give fresh, sweet water. In fact, when I got a water
testing kit, they scored well on every count. So no nitrates, oestrogens
or other pollutants there, and the health and vitality of the folk living
there is an obvious testimony to the benefits of this.
There is no doubt that water will be one of the major issues
of the 21st century, - already 40% of the worlds population does not
have access to clean drinking water — and we are very, very lucky
here in Wales to have such a wealth of the stuff! Remember this next
time it’s pouring down, and be grateful.
Drinking water comes from the wells, but the rest, for washing
bodies, dishes and clothes, we get from the streams flowing through
the valley, coming down from springs on the moor high above us. It’s
always worth checking in the bucket to make sure no small beings, like
water boatman or freshwater shrimps, have been accidently swept up,
and carefully returning them to their aquatic home.
You really learn the value of water when it has to be carried
home, and I often think of my african sisters, who carry water for miles
each day, and then my 500 yard stretch seems very little. But even so,
not a drop is wasted, and I always make sure that there is enough for
a morning cup of tea. And of course, keeping the wells and the stream
clean, not putting dirty containers in the wells or soap in the stream,
is essential, another important lesson that our modern world would do
well to remember!
Next time I will talk about the wonderful world of Wood, another crucial
ingredient of Tipi Living!