Tuesday, 22 July 2008

Re-forming Our World :)

WOW, thanks so much everyone for all the amazing feedback about the Raw Prison Reform ideas :) Seems like this strikes a chord of interest for many of you too...one reader, Jan, even sent in a link to a WONDERFUL short newspaper article from Texas, where a prison in Collin County has started to grow its own food, in response to escalating food costs. WONDERFUL :)
CLICK HERE to read the article in full – here’s my favourite part of the article, starting with a quote from one of the inmates on his thoughts about growing food:

'"It's interesting to see where it comes from instead of just buying it at the grocery store," Scalf said.

That is where Collin County is
saving money. The jail grows their own fruits and vegetables on 40 acres of land.

"It's a tool we use to control behavior," said Lt. Terry McCraw. "When you are feeding them fresh fruits or corn on the cob or cantalope or watermelon, it helps behavior. If you eat good food, you are happier."'

YES, exactly – oooooooo, I find this all so exciting...let’s see where this goes... ;) Thanks for the inspiring link, Jan :)

on July the 18th I had:

1 quart water
mug of ‘sweet chili’ tea
1 cup green juice: cucumber, celery, tatsoi, endive, fennel, kale, chard, greens from the garden, ginger, lime
2 cups ‘energy soup’ with mung beans and dehydrated sea spaghetti stirred in, with a flax cracker, followed by a lime swirl
mug of sweet chai tea
3 cups water
shot of wheatgrass
big green salad straight from the garden with tahini dressing, 2 little gorgeous almond ‘burger’ patties, okra, red bell pepper. Followed by a lime swirl
mug of licorice tea
3 cups water

on July the 19th I had:

1 quart water
mug of licorice tea
2 cups green juice: cucumber, celery, tatsoi, endive, fennel, kale, chard, greens from the garden, ginger, lime
2 cups ‘energy soup’ with mung beans and dehydrated sea spaghetti stirred in, with a flax cracker, followed by a lime swirl
mug of sweet chai tea
3 cups water
shot of wheatgrass
2 cups ‘energy soup’ with mung beans and dehydrated sea spaghetti stirred in, with a flax cracker, followed by a lime swirl
mug of choco tea
3 cups water

Mr Monarch is now here enjoying the delights of Iceland too :) He arrived a few days ago and has, naturally, been loving the clean fresh air and water too...we speak in Reykjavik tomorrow (Wednesday the 23rd) at the Rope Yoga Studio at Engjateigur 19, starting 7pm – hope to see you there if you’re in this area ;) It seems like it’s going to be a very full house – FUN. We’re excited to meet everyone and share... :)
With all the geothermal energy available in this country, there is SUCH massive potential for growing fruits and veggies year-round in geo-thermally heated and powered greenhouses here...I think it’s very exciting; time for Iceland to go RAW on a massive scale, perhaps...? lol – hmmmmm, we’ll see...it’s a bit of a switch in lifestyle from the traditional burnt sheeps’ heads, putrefied shark and heavy dairy products... ;)

on July the 20th I had:

1 quart water
mug of ‘ginger’ tea
2 cups green juice: cucumber, celery, tatsoi, endive, fennel, kale, chard, greens from the garden, ginger
1 cup ‘energy soup’ with fennel sprouts and dehydrated seaweed stirred in, with fresh bell pepper and a flax cracker. Followed by a little bowl of blended yum: almonds, lucuma, yacon powder, cinnamon, maca, wih gojis stirred in for chewability
mug of choco tea
3 cups water
1 cup green juice: cucumber, celery, tatsoi, endive, fennel, kale, chard, greens from the garden, ginger
little bowl of blended yum: almonds, lucuma, yacon powder, cinnamon, maca, wih gojis stirred in for chewability
mug of choco tea
2 cups water

on July the 21st I had:

1 quart water
mug of licorice tea
shot of wheatgrass
2 cups ‘energy soup’ with with fennel sprouts and dehydrated seaweed stirred in, with a flax cracker. Goji berry powder, pomegranate powder and little ‘bliss balls’
mug of ‘choco’ tea
3 cups water
cup of green juice
3 nori rolls stuffed with sunflower pate and veggies, flax crackers, cherry tomatoes. Followed by a few little bliss balls and some goji berries
cup of licorice tea
2 cups water

MMMMmmmMMmMmMmmmmm, I expect many of you may have seen the BEAUTIFUL story of ‘Christian the Lion’ on YouTube in the last weeks. Yesterday one reader, Lynn, sent me the extended video of the story on YouTube – ahhhhhhhhhhhh, it is SOOO beautiful to me...you can check it out at the link below...I don’t think I’ve met anyone yet who hasn’t found themselves streaming tears of joy by the end of this...ENJOY :)

All love,
Angela. xxx


  1. I started my morning with tears after watching that video. It was very touching and beautiful.

    Lots of love to you,

    Wendi Dee

  2. I really doubted the truth of this story, until I googled it and found this....makes sense it happened in the 70's...
    Christian, the lion who lived in my London living room
    Last updated at 23:24 04 May 2007

    Comments (6) Add to My Stories
    He travelled by Bentley, ate in fine London restaurants and spent his days lounging in a furniture shop. The story of Christian the pet lion - and his eventual release into the wild - is as moving as it is incredible.
    The furniture shop was on the King's Road in London. It sold tables, wardrobes, chairs and desks - but anybody peering through its plate-glass window on a Sunday might have noticed something rather more unusual.

    Amid all the pine and oak, stretched out languidly on a bench, there was a lion. And it wasn't stuffed.

    Scroll down for more...

    Tiger feet: Christian enjoyed living in swinging London

    "Christian used to lie beside me while I did the accounts at weekends," remembers Jennifer Mary Taylor, who worked there.

    "And every so often, if I'd ignored him for too long, he'd sock me across the head with one of his great big paws.

    "He was very loving and affectionate - he liked to stand and put his paws on your shoulders. But he was...", she pauses. "I mean, he was a lion. Does that sound silly?"

    Christian the lion (named by someone with a Biblical sense of humour) arrived in

    Chelsea at a time when the King's Road - home to Mick Jagger - was the very heart of the Swinging Sixties.

    For a year, the Big Cat was part of it all, cruising the streets in the back of a Bentley, popping in for lunch at Casserole, a local restaurant, even posing for a Biba fashion advert.

    He eventually grew too big to be kept as a pet and was taken to Kenya, where he was rehabilitated into the wild by the 'Lion Man', George Adamson.

    Now, his story is to be told in a new book, written by the Australian John Rendall who, along with his friend Ace Berg, bought Christian from Harrods in 1969.

    London pride: At home in John Rendall's Chelsea flat

    So what possessed them to buy a lion cub in the first place?

    "A friend had been to the 'exotic animals' department at Harrods and announced, rather grandly, that she wanted a camel," says Rendall.

    "To which the manager very coolly replied: 'One hump or two, madam?'

    "Ace and I thought this was the most sophisticated repartee we'd ever heard, so we went along to check it out - and there, in a small cage, was a gorgeous little lion cub. We were shocked. We looked at each other and said something's got to be done about that."

    Harrods, it turned out, was also quite keen to be rid of Christian, who had escaped one night, sneaked into the neighbouring carpet department - then in the throes of a sale of goatskin rugs - and wreaked havoc.

    The store, which had acquired the cub from Ilfracombe zoo, happily agreed to part with him for 250 guineas. So began Christian's year as an urban lion.

    Today, it would be unthinkable for a shop to take such a cavalier attitude towards selling exotic animals (though Harrods did, at least, provide Ace and Rendall with diet sheets).

    And it is hard to imagine either the animal rights lobby or any local council condoning a shop as a suitable habitat for a lion. But, back then, no one minded at all.

    Christian was given his own living quarters (and a very large kitty-litter tray, which he used unfailingly) in the basement of the appropriately named Sophistocat furniture shop.

    "He had a beautiful musky smell that was very distinct," says Rendall. "But he was clean."

    The vicar of the Moravian Chapel nearby was approached to allow Christian the run of the graveyard, and every day he was taken there to roar around and play football.

    Once, when he was brought along to a seaside picnic, he dipped his toes reluctantly in the water and intimated with a shudder that it was disagreeably cold. But he was eventually persuaded to swim in the English Channel.

    "He was a lot of work," says Rendall. "It took all four of us - me, my then girlfriend Jennifer Mary, Ace Berg and an actress called Unity Jones - to look after him.

    Cat's pyjamas: Christian, rummaging through the drawers

    "He also ate a lot, four meals (two liquid, two solid) plus supplements every day, which cost about £30 a week - a lot of money back then."

    He pauses, then adds, "And he had a very good sense of humour."


    "Oh yes. Sometimes, he'd see people staring at him through the back window of the car, keep very still on purpose - and then, just when they were convinced he was a stuffed toy, he would very slowly turn his head and freak them out."

    Everyone loved Christian and he became a popular local figure. In 1970, when Chelsea beat Leeds in the FA Cup Final, Sophistocat received a call from a policeman, 'The football fans are going to be boisterous, so you'd better get your bloody lion out of the window or they'll smash it in,' he warned.

    Christian himself was beautifully behaved, and though he never hurt anyone, you underestimated his strength at your peril.

    Jennifer Mary remembers taking a friend to see him, "after I'd had one or two glasses of wine -and when he put his paws on my shoulders, one of them slipped, his claw caught my dress and he pulled the whole front of it off."

    He grew and grew - from 35lb when he first arrived to a rather more serious and imposing 185lb a year later - and he was beginning to acquire a mane that made him look more fearsome.

    He clearly could not stay with his two young owners for ever.

    His future was decided by a chance encounter - when the actors Bill Travers and Virginia McKenna walked into the shop to buy a pine desk.

    They had recently starred in the film Born Free, which tells the true story of the wildlife conservationist George Adamson and his wife Joy, who raised a lion cub called Elsa in Kenya then rehabilitated it into the wild.

    And they immediately suggested that Adamson might be able to help.

    Certainly, the conservationist was intrigued by the challenge of introducing a King's Road lion to the wilds of Africa.

    "But," he warned, '"ou must be prepared for this not to work. Elsa was born in Africa and she knew its smells. Taking a British-born lion, whose parents were also raised in captivity, is going to be a very different thing."

    Christian was flown to Kenya in a specially-made crate emblazoned with the words, 'East African Airways. London-Nairobi. Christian - male lion, 12 months'. John and Ace went with him.

    "I think George Adamson got quite a shock when he met us," says Rendall. "Straight from the King's Road, in all our gear - flares from Granny Takes A Trip, and with hair everywhere.

    "We looked rather different from everyone else in Nairobi. But then so did Christian. He'd come from winter in England, so had a very thick coat - he was almost as hairy as we were."

    Adamson wanted to drive straight to the Kora Reserve, close to the Tana river, where there was no human habitation. This, he felt, would be the ideal spot to build a camp.

    Because lions live and hunt in prides, and it is hard to impose a new male on an existing one, the plan was to introduce Christian into the wild in tandem with Boy, one of the tame beasts who had starred in Born Free.

    Together, they would form the nucleus of a new pride - and the whole project would be funded by a TV programme.

    Christian was marshalled into the back of a Land Rover, with straw on the floor and chicken-wire separating him from his friends on the front seat. It was all rather confusing for a lion accustomed to the butter-soft leather of a Bentley. And he was hot. And dusty. And confused.

    Not long into the journey, Rendall ventured, "Mr Adamson, he needs to go to the loo."

    Adamson was impatient.

    "We're miles from anywhere. If we stop here and he runs away, we will never, ever catch him."

    "Mr Adamson," promised Rendall, "that is not going to happen."

    The great Lion Man turned his head, sucked on his pipe and pulled over on the dirt road.

    Rendall opened the back of the car, and Christian jumped out to take his first real steps on African soil.

    To his evident disgust, it was prickly and hot. He clearly didn't like it one bit.

    Rendall picks up the story, "So he went tip-toeing along and went to the loo.

    Considerably. Then he looked around and I said, 'OK, come on, back in,' pointed back at the car - and in he jumped.

    "I got back in the car, too, shut the door and George Adamson turned round and said to me, 'That is quite remarkable. You may call me George.'"

    Kora, an area that now has National Park status, lies about 220 miles to the north-east of Nairobi. The scenery is rugged - densely packed with knotty thorn bushes, with just a narrow corridor of greenery that follows the course of the Tana river.

    And so Christian arrived at the camp, which Adamson's brother had built from macuti - palm fronds - chicken-wire and mud.

    The conservationist went off again and returned a couple of days later with Boy, the lion from Born Free.

    At that time, Boy was very fragile, as his shoulder had been shattered in a nasty encounter with a buffalo. But he was the first fully-grown lion that Christian had seen since leaving Ilfracombe zoo as a cub.

    The first meeting was explosive. Normal lion protocol dictates that the younger male should be subservient to the dominant male.

    But Christian, more schooled in Sloane than feline etiquette, sashayed fearlessly towards Boy.

    Fortunately, Christian and Boy, though in adjacent compounds, were separated by a wire fence. In fury at the perceived slight, Boy flung himself against it - until Christian, suddenly realising his faux pas, slunk away with his belly close to the ground.

    This process was repeated over and over again until Adamson felt confident enough to allow the pair to meet without the safety barrier of the fence.

    "First, Boy left his compound," recalls Rendall. "Then Christian went out to meet him.

    "Boy took one look - and he clobbered him. Christian didn't fight back. He rolled over on his back. That went on for day after day, until Boy was obviously satisfied that Christian knew who was boss - and they became totally inseparable."

    Adamson had also acquired a female lion cub, Katania, to add to the pride, and she seemed to act as an intermediary between the two males.

    Each day, the three lions would go out for a walk in the bush, Boy first, Katania in the middle, then Christian - with Adamson, carrying a rifle in case he needed to scare anything off, at the rear.

    For Christian, there were some tricky moments, such as the time he spied a rhino and tried to stalk it, only for the beast to hurl him through the air in a cloud of dust.

    "I saw Boy turn and look at Christian," says Rendall. "There was a look on his face, as if to say: 'You absolute fool. What a howler of a blunder.'"

    Slowly, progress was made. The biggest threat to Christian and Boy were the wild lions that stalked the reserve, which Boy was fighting to establish as his territory.

    Then, one day, there was a tragedy that caused the whole project to be called into question. A chef called Stanley had left the safety of the compound to look for wild honey. He hadn't realised Boy was nearby, and when he saw him, he tried to flee.

    Running away was the worst action he could have taken. Adamson, hearing Stanley's screams, came running and shot Boy through the heart - but it was too late. Stanley had been bitten through the jugular and died an hour later.

    The outcry that followed almost brought the lion project to a halt, but Adamson found some support for his work among other conservationists, dug in his heels and carried on.

    John Rendall and Ace Berg continued to make sporadic visits to Kenya, but mostly they followed Christian's adventures from afar.

    Finally, in 1974, George Adamson wrote to say that the pride was self-sufficient. Christian was defending it. There was a litter of cubs. They were feeding themselves and rarely returned to camp.

    The King's Road lion had finally adapted to the wild.

    This was a bittersweet moment for all concerned. Rendall and Ace decided to travel to Kora one last time, in the hope of being able to say goodbye, though Adamson warned them that it would almost certainly be a wasted mission.

    "Christian hasn't been here for nine months. We have no reason to think he's dead - there have been no reports of lions poached or killed. But he may never come back," he said.

    Rendall recalls, "We said: 'OK. We appreciate that, but we'll come anyway and see you.'"

    They flew to Nairobi then took a small plane to the camp in Kora, where Adamson came out to meet them.

    "Christian arrived last night, " he said simply. "He's here with his lionesses and his cubs. He's outside the camp on his favourite rock. He's waiting for you."

    Adamson and his wife Joy often talked about the mysterious, apparently telepathic communication skills of lions - particularly between lions and men.

    Both believed that lions were possessed of a sixth sense and George was convinced that a scientific explanation would one day be found.

    And here, it seemed, was the proof.

    "Christian stared at us in a very intense way," says Rendall. "I knew his expressions and I could see he was interested. We called him and he stood up and started to walk towards us very slowly.

    "Then, as if he had become convinced it was us, he ran towards us, threw himself on to us, knocked us over, knocked George over and hugged us, like he used to, with his paws on our shoulders.

    "Everyone was crying. We were crying, George was crying, even the lion was nearly crying."

    "The lionesses were far from pleased. There was a lot of growling and spitting," continues Rendall.

    "'George said: 'This isn't safe - we'd better go.' So we each put a hand on Christian's back and he walked with us back to camp."

    The reunion party went on all night and into the morning. Leaving his exhausted companions to go to their beds, Christian returned to his pride.

    "We watched him go back to the two lionesses, who were not at all happy with this man, smelling of nicotine, whisky and humans," says Rendall.

    "He just walloped the two of them with his paw, then collapsed."

    And that was the last anyone ever saw of him.

    For the next 14 years, George Adamson remained at Kora, rehabilitating several other lions and ignoring warnings from the authorities, who did not consider it safe for him to stay.

    Then, in 1989, he was ambushed and murdered by bandits.

    He died with a gun in his hand and, in accordance with his wishes, was buried at Kora.

    Following his death, his supporters formed the George Adamson Wildlife Preservation Trust, which now does work in Kora as well as in Tanzania, where it is reintroducing the endangered black rhino and hunting dog.

    The trust's chief aim is keep alive Adamson's dream of a place where animals can roam free - a fitting epitaph not just for the great conservationist but also for the lion who once lived in Chelsea.


  3. Thank you so much for posting this, it brought me so much joy, I could watch it over and over...

  4. Hi Angela - I guess I've "stumbled" onto your website and blog today as I've been researching raw food and thinking about perhaps going a percentage raw... to see what it's like, you know?

    But I also was amazed that we have some other things in common. I thought about studying linguistics, but ended up majoring in... singing! I'm 28 now & used to be a bit overweight but lost weight through a healthy lifestyle just in the past one year. I also love world travel, but haven't been able to do much of that lately.

    Hope to get to know you a little better as I keep thinking about going raw...

  5. Very Interesting! I can see you're getting the majority of your protein from beans. I am not fully RAW, nor strive to be, but I adhere to the basic rules of eating in that the majority of my calories come from beans, nuts, fruits, and veggies.

    Keep up the good work!