dryadgrl: (Default)
I know, I'm posting a ton of stuff. I'm processing a bunch of information from the last few days and weeks and putting it here makes it searchable for me.

Do you Suffer from Decision fatigue. This is something I know I've dealt with and I wonder how it effects communities and group decision-making.
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There is a distinct lack of various resources here. And yet...

But there is also an incredible richness to this land and the people here. For one thing, reaching out the car window to pick blackberries while driving is luxurious experience. Most places I've been this week have food growing for the taking.

Blackberries and plum trees and and wild greens and oregon grape and things growing and growing. There's so much food it's hard to process it all (and process it takes a lot of resources). F and C brought home about 10 gallons of blackberries in the last few days and a few gallons of plums so there have been multiple blackberry pies and plum sauce and plum sorbet and smoothies and yumminess. There are animals and chickens for the asking so we have lots of eggs and food that can be traded and shared.

Being a good cook is a valuable skill here because there's no place to go out and eat (save the burrito truck in town which of course costs money). So we have lots of staples and a strong need to make things from scratch. We had pizza last night with veggies from H's garden and cheese from a neighbor's goat. Yummy, delightful things. I'm eating better here than I ever do in the city in some ways because everything is homemade.

And people are really helpful. There's a lot of sharing and offering and I find myself offering our food to people who are here at meals everyday and arranging to make communal meals with other folks in the house. It's all bring your own and what we don't have we make up for in other ways. We took lunch to the workers at the house yesterday of veggies and hummus, and fruit and bread.

And people know you and your situation. There's a water issue here so people bring water when they come, they know it's
what needs to happen. It's a beautiful and brilliant community and I'm really enjoying delving into it a little.

There are ways in which this abundances so out does anything I've ever need in a city or a city community. Most people just don't share on this level and I'm starting to wonder if it's the necessity of the interdependence that makes people do it.
dryadgrl: (Default)
I drove through some "neighborhoods" here in the last few days and noticed some things. First of all lots of people live "off the paved road" as I like to call it.

They live on gravel driveways or streets sometimes miles from a road often many miles from a town.

A case in point, our neighbor H. She actually lives about 13 miles from here, but is one of the few "young people" in town (she's 28, single and educated, a rarity all around). She inherited some land out here and is trying to make a go of it.

The structure of her house is built, but the interior is barren. I don't mean it needs a couch, I mean it needs insolation and sheet rock before it can be painted. This last week they've been working on putting in a hearth. You have to have the wall and floor finished before you can do that, so my son and others have been over there moving and hauling, measuring and nailing.

But there are people from at least 3 households with tools and resources from more. There's no way she could have done this on her own. Aside from the physicality of lifting sheet rock, the bridge out to her property is made of half of a tree covered in boards, no sides or rails, so you have to have help getting things from the car over the creek and up to the house.

I've never seen anything like it.

In doing all the work I've been doing and looking at in community, our city communities are optional. I can go to meetings and help with rituals and events or not. They will happen without me. But here that's simply not true. We have to work together or H won't have a place to live when it rains and tens of thousands of dollars of work will be lost to the elements. In the city you (or I) would hire someone to do it.

This is a different form of poverty. In the city there are a huge amount of resources. It's different, you need names and numbers and pieces of papers to access them but they are available where I live. (Not everywhere, but there are many resources and most major cities in the US.) Out here they just don't exist.

When I was homeless in Orange County there was always a way to find a few dollars here or there and I'm finding here that that's really hard. The comparison of urban and rural poverty is immensely different. I've thought a lot about urban poverty over the years. I've written about my experiences and less as that's changed for me. I definitely have guilt some days about leaving behind places where I had so few resources.

But I think these experiences are and are creating bridges. I know that what I need to be in community is different from what's needed out here. I feel like this needs exploring of how the ideas that I'm studying are applicable (or not) across communities.
dryadgrl: (Default)
We ran out of water today.

I'm in Oregon, on land with a well for a few days. There's not enough water to sustain us today which is intense for me. As someone with resources we could go buy it or get it from the well in town, but it makes me conscious of the fact that our water comes from the earth and it's different in different seasons and different places. I know that somewhere in my head, but it's not something I usually think about day to day.

I didn't shower today which is rare for me as someone who comes from a city and who goes to a city for work most days - there's a standard that's expected, there are Things that need to be done to maintain social mores. There was no water from the tap for flushing toilets or showers or cooking. Those Things just happen living where I live that do not happen when you live on land where the well has run dry.

I wonder what would happen if we decided that we would only use local water? How would that change where we live, what we do and who we are?
dryadgrl: (Default)
Why poor people support tax breaks for the rich.

Interesting theory about not wanting to be at the bottom.


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