There was no post last weekend because I was too depressed to write one. My heart longed for Colorado. I missed my neighbors and other friends there, the women with whom I would never play tennis again, the small yards and tall trees, and the simple life I had with so many amenities—like five minutes from three wonderful organic grocers. And then I got the call that humbled me.
On Saturday, July 4, I learned that my niece had lost her husband in a car wreck. All the tears I couldn’t cry for myself came rushing for her loss. They had a dream and had been acting on it. They sold their house in one state and bought property in another where she landed a teaching job. Together, they would realize their dream of hydroponic gardening in a state running out of water because hydroponics uses so much less.
On Monday, July 6, I sent this email to a friend in Australia: “The pendulum (a reflection of one’s subconscious) says ‘go back to Colorado! Don’t stay here!’ But it has taken so long to update my accounts since I moved, that I’m reluctant to move again, and I still have too much stuff. I am lonelier here than I ever was there. I am torn.”
Blame it all on the Pandemic.
Thrift stores stopped taking donations and closed down in March (COVID-19) not long after I sold my house. I gave away three truckloads; two were home and yard maintenance. I filled up all the dumpsters twice with personal belongings and still had all this stuff I don’t want. My goal is to get down to what will easily fit in either a van or a truck.
That afternoon, trying for hours to update yet another account with my new contact information, I conceded that staying put was probably the best answer. At least I have a place to live. Even though it’s dark, has very little usable storage space, and has fleas, it works. I am not homeless, and it’s close to a trail.
That night, I called a friend in Colorado because I have been in Arkansas for two months and still can’t bring myself to unpack the boxes. A compassionate man, he understood mourning the loss of my life in Durango where I had lived for forty-four years. But he reminded me of the beauty in this new place that he discovered in the photos I posted in this series. And then he lobbied for “embracing where I am now.” His perspective was age and ensuing death, echoed by a Facebook friend’s post:
While I long to live in Colorado again, and even offered to help my niece with her dream, I’m reasonably certain that’s not in the cards. She’s in her prime and has lots of friends. She’s strong and capable. Why would she want her aunt there? I’m finally accepting that I’m not part of the family, despite all the times I visited them no matter where they lived, including England. As one sibling explained, “You don’t live here.” Out of sight, out of mind.
It’s time for me to embrace that, too, to finally accept it as my truth. I’ve been working on letting go of all of IT.
And on Wednesday morning, July 8, I found myself looking again at something I saw on Facebook (see below) because I might get to have that with the extended family of the happily married man who brought me here. His wife works on his brother’s farm and sells eggs to friends. It’s conceivable that I might also get the opportunity to work on the farm. My friend already gives me vegetables, and I buy a dozen eggs for a neighbor who is a single mother with five children.
A Canadian friend has been working in community gardens which could be an answer to our future, as this Facebook entry recommends:
HOW TO GET READY FOR THE COLLAPSE OF CAPITALISM by Bill Mollison, Founder of Permaculture
- Learn to plant, not only a garden, but also basic crops (corn, cassava, etc. ) and trees (fruit, native, woody);
- Create a bond with some land, whether yours or that of a relative, a project, a community garden, etc. Participate with the people who live there, gradually looking for ways to spend more time in the country than in the city, learning to plant, build, treat organic waste and heal in nature;
- Develop practical skills (kitchen, carpentry, machine repair, food processing, sewing, etc. ).
- Teach these skills to children and friends, neighbors, neighbors;
- Seek a mutual support group, where people take care of each other, make basic necessity products collectively, such as natural hygiene products, natural remedies such as syrups and herbal tinctures, food processing, such as preserved and fermented foods;
- Simplify your life now, freeing up more space and time. Discover everything you can do without money, walk, exercise, craft and body arts, socialize with your loved ones, gardening;
- Separate yourself from the logic of consuming more and more. They prefer long-lasting artisanal products, made by small producers, social companies, and solidarity economic companies. Making exchanges, giving and receiving gifts of affective value, rather than financial value;
- Exchange, store, multiply and spread Creole seeds (native, non-genetically modified, produced by popular and family agriculture);
- Recognize that life will be much better later! We’re just in transition.
I have been driven to have a garden since I listed my house to sell. The place I wanted most to rent in Durango was a duplex on an organic farm; I didn’t get it.
If I don’t get to be part of another person’s plan, perhaps I’ll buy some property somewhere and do my own little garden. Like this one in Seattle from the Facebook page, Humans Who Grow Food:
[To be continued…]
Till next time,
“Please be kind to everyone you meet, for we all have our hidden sorrows.” ~Tzaddi, a.k.a. Pam Young.