It was autumn 2011, I killed and plucked my first chicken. Between now and then lies a world of difference. I think I have never experienced so many new impulses as during the last two years.
... I saw the first snow in Ireland. I learned the name of predators and saw them steal our ducks and chickens. The people around me were my teachers in this new school of life.
... Barbara and Edi taught me how to kill and pluck ducks. Mick, the 'King Shepherd' as Orla calls him, taught, and still teaches us, the sheep's nature.
I lived through the worst summer and winter weather for centuries and shared 'end of the world thoughts' with Matt who like us faces the weather elements each day up on his thatch.
... I was introduced to farm life by Orla and learned it is unpredictable and rough, but so beautiful. I developed another notion of time in a new landscape.
... As Frank says: 'Each year the same story, every spring the same thing, but there's always something new. My farm chores replaced my daily leisure.'
Dennis taught me that self-sufficiency is not for dreamers or idlers and that it is impossible to do everything alone. After three years experience, we had to give up, take away, re-see some of the first dreams.
... Being a shepherd is a tough life, it is a wonderful life. It is a total life. All of this learning has enriched me and I can say that I gained a great gratitude and admiration for the shepherds, growers, farmers and craftsmen who are the beginning of our food chain and they should have the respect they deserve.
The film 'The rabbit and the teasel' is drawn from my own experiences, all the stories that I heard, read and collected. The Black Lamb has its fourth and final update for the moment.
"In the thinking of urban people of a certain formal education the word 'but' is really quiet important... she is beautiful but drives a jaguar.
... In the talking that goes on in peasants heads the word 'but' is extremely rare and is usualy 'and' because they are used to living with contradiction.
...We nourished our pigs, we love them and, not but, we ate them. And you can multiply that a thousand times. This different use of language has to do with a different attitude towards duration." (John Berger)