Monday 28 January 2008

Scenes from Away and a Pleasant Surprise Which Leads to a Little Reading

Two incidents gladdened my heart while I was out of town, like blossoms brought forth from the branch above. The first occurred in my favourite bakery/cafe The Pie Plate. During lunch bits and pieces of the conversation next to us drifted over (it's a small place in a small town). I heard the words "off-grid" and "sustainable" and "yurt". When a book was pulled out on yurts, I couldn't resist interrupting (i.e. blurting across the table): "that is sooo cool!" Conversation ensued, and I found myself meeting others who were of a like mind with regards to sustainable living. This was highly surprising, given the conservative nature of my hometown environs.

The second was even more delightful. I had the chance to catch up with an old friend and her new husband over dinner. Now this friend is probably the sweetest person I've ever met, so I knew dinner would be enjoyable regardless (and my Mom was babysitting so yay! adult conversation!) I hadn't met her husband yet and it had been a couple of years since she and I spent time together, so at first we exchanged autobiographies and caught up as people do. And then over the course of the evening one thing led to another and someone said "peak oil" and there was a pause and an inward gasp and each of us realised that we weren't the only crazy ones in the room.

And then the conversation really got going. And it was good. The great thing about it is that, on the surface, you would never think it to look at this couple. Which sounds superficial, but I'm not going to apologize. They are lovely, professional, upper-middle class, church-going folk from a fairly conservative town. That is the limited description that a passer-by would get. If they were off-grid vegans, well.....

So, peak-everything is everyone's concern. Isn't that nice?

And they were kind enough to lend me Jane Jacobs' book Dark Age Ahead (here's an interview with her by Jim Kunstler). That to top off the ridiculous number of books I got from the library, after having gone through Sharon's list of books, the "best books about nearly everything".

The librarian left a message at our house asking if i could please come and pick up the box of books that were being held for me. When I picked them up, she merrily asked me to show her pictures of my garden when it's done.

What a nice idea! But the real question is, does she want pictures of the composting toilet as well? :-)


cloth.paper.string said...

so, so good to see that you've found like-minds in your environs. the perfect antidote to a stint in suburbia, eh?

and, i have to say that i can't help but look at the pile of books and focus in on heart & hands and wonder if you're cultivating more than vegetables and fruits...

Heather said...

what wonderful experiences. I personally would like to see a picture of the composting toilet. Does that make me weird?

Unknown said...

Sarah: ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! you've got sharp eyes, but no, no....just vegetables and fruits. you should have seen the look on Mr. S.'s face when I showed him your comment :-) i'm just interested in midwifery, amongst everything else!

Heather: you make me smile - not weird, just as curious as the rest of us, eh? and for the record, we don't have a composting toilet.....yet....i'm still working on Mr. S :-)