It’s sad that Mom is drinking again. Not horribly, but more than enough to make it a crutch/addiction. Her friends encourage her too, which makes it worse.
I want to talk to her, but she’s “gone” right now. Not every night, but, again, more than enough for it to be sad. She has so little to do in life, no real purpose. She tried her journalism in high school thing, but she just really didn’t care about the topic that much. It might pick up again when school starts up (she’s sort of working with someone else who was starting something similar, locally), but again, her heart really isn’t in it. It seems more of a “I should do something” kind of obligatory action than a passion.
And she does still keep the library going, but that’s not that exciting for her, really, and not that rewarding either most of the time, because, well, it’s a tiny town and a tiny library that doesn’t have many visitors.
Anyway, it’s sad. Brings back all kinds of bad memories. I don’t really have the energy or attachment to focus on it, so it doesn’t bother me too much (when she’s “gone” I am usually busy doing my own work, so I don’t notice it much), but it is there, and it is frustrating to have no one who can help her take better care of herself around here.
Lj seems to be really broken, so I’ll put my emotional thoughts and feelings here, again.
I’m in an odd place these days. Being connected to the internet, in a more consistent and full way again has changed my work and life dramatically. I’m far less connected with “Palermo stuff”, and far more connected to “Global stuff”. It’s not good or bad, it just is. But it means I’m conflicted about where to invest my energies, now that I have a choice in the matter. :-) Google+ has been awesome, and really much more of what I think we’ve needed in the world as a social networking system that really supports intelligent collaboration on global problems. It’s not perfect, but it’s got far more of what we need for this kind of work than anyone else has offered (or at least that enough people use). There is still plenty of unhelpful/sick stuff out there, but nothing compared to Reddit! The real names thing helps immensely, obviously, as people are far more intentional when it comes to communicating nonymously than when putting stuff out there anonymously. Honesty and accountability definitely go a long way to encouraging healthy discourse. There’s certainly a need for spaces to vent and be sick, but a social networking space isn’t where that stuff belongs (that belongs in more intimate settings where there are supportive folks around who understand the value of puking both physically and emotionally :-).
I’m still working on the Binikou local food program at the library and will start having workshops next month. I don’t really want to, but I’ve made a commitment, and gotten the money, and I believe I can make it into something I enjoy. I do wish I had more freedom to do what I wanted with the money, rather than having to stick to a specific plan (which might not be what the community really needs). It’s hard to do the right thing when there are restrictions, and the right thing isn’t officially supported. :-) But I can work with it for now.
Also, on a totally different note, Mom and I found out yesterday that she has quite the serious phobia of flying bats near her head. Which was a surprise because she’s dealt with dead and hurt bats in the house several times and never had a problem. But yesterday morning there was a bat in her bedroom, and when she tried to get out of the room, she freaked out when it flew near her, crouched down on the floor, and literally couldn’t move, even though she wanted to get out of there. I managed to get her window open and the bat flew out, which worked well for everyone. But it was pretty weird how she reacted so strongly. She knew it was silly, but she couldn’t stop herself. We humans are weird, aren’t we? :-)
And on another note, it’s really nice for once to have a real garden. For the first time I really do have more of some things than I can use! I’m not feeling much like making stuff lately (and was eating junk food for a while, even), and I’ve got so much kale! I’m sure I’ll finally start making kale chips again, hopefully… And I’ve even got lots of zucchini, too, for the first time. Fortunately zucchini is very useful as a filler for lots of raw food recipes. I got some raw food books for the library with some of the grant money, and that’s helping inspire me. But it would be so much nicer if there were other people around me making yummy raw food stuff too.
My Honey, David, Pywaket,
I want to invite you to come up here, where the environment is healthier and people are less stressed, to build a yurt, or fix up Irving to live in, on Mom’s land, and help out with her gardens and orchards, and maybe help us out at the library, too, and find a better life for both of us.
All my heart,
Gardening is good for the soul! :-)
I’ve even planted some broccoli, for you…
And maybe I can get a decent sized grant for the library to host Binikou style superfood gardening/foraging/”cooking” programs, to bring even more healthy gardening inspiration to the community up here…
I went down to the post office with the Raleigh yesterday again, and my tire and headlight packages were there. They weren’t supposed to come until today, but they were there. The postal worker said he hoped my bike had saddle bags because one of the boxes was almost as tall as me. There wasn’t anything at all on the bike, not even a rack. But, of course they overpackaged everything, and I just took the tire and light box out of the big boxes, and squished everything into my courier bag and was fine. I promptly got home and put the tire on my bike (which already had the trailer on it), and was a happy camper. It was good timing since I wanted to be able to stay later than Mom at the library today to get Doctor Who. So I biked here, and it was indeed much faster than walking! :-) Took about an hour, with a couple of short stops (one at the post office) for the nine very mountainous miles from Mom’s to the library.
I do have to say I was starting to get used to the zippy Raleigh. It was nice to fly around with so little weight and tire surface. But I still choose carrying capacity over speed pretty much any day. I have to lug all my computer things to the library, plus my lunch, water (the running water here isn’t filtered, and may or may not be safe), bike tools, and my usual bag o’ stuff. And if I see something cool on the side of the road I can probably fit it into my trailer, which is just the way I like it!
Yay for bicycles!
I finally got to bike a ways yesterday! It was lovely! I’d gotten my bike thta was up here all working a while back, but hadn’t gone anywhere, really. Then I put the trailer on this week, and went to try it out but the front wheel was suddenly all weird. Turns out that the tire had disintegrated a bit in one area and was starting to explode. Thankfully I just got a chunk of money from taxes, and had enough to buy a new tire, as well as a good headlight so I can actually bike at night. But while I’m waiting for REI to ship my stuff, and while it was so very, very nice out yesterday afternoon (I was wearing a tank top!), I was going stir crazy not being able to bike. Also, I signed mom and I up for Netflix free month trial, so she could get some videos (as it’s difficult for her to get to the video store more than once a week, and you have to return the videos the next day…), and we had a Doctor Who DVD to mail back, so we could get another one. So I set up the Raliegh (sp?) that is up here, and dropped the seat down to the bottom so I could get on it. I definitely hate drop handlebars, and the breaks are way to far away from my hands, so it’s hard to break and I have to get into a really awkward position to do so (my back hurt!), but at least it was rideable enough for me to get to the post office and back (near the grange in “downtown” Palermo. :-) And it was wonderful to be on a bike again, going somewhere! Yay!
Also, as an update, the Library drama is mostly over. One of the guys calmed down, and I helped mom communicate in a healthy and respectful way to him and others, so that we all had a meeting and things went really well. And the other guy has just left the library completely and isn’t talking to anyone. So things are going well again at the little Palermo Library. The gardening event last Saturday was pretty much a bust, since it was raining, hailing, sleeting, and snowing all day. But we got a few folks show up to talk about plans, and some donations of plants. So it’s just going to be a slower, later process of creating a healthy living space out there.
And, speaking of gardening, I’ve got a few more spaces planted in the spot mom gave me in her yard. It will fill up really quickly as the weather gets less frosty.
Oh, and I’m learning to identify birds! Did you know that woodpeckers sound like monkeys laughing? It’s a noise straight out of a jungle! We have yellow bellied sapsuckers (a very pretty kind of woodpecker that is quite common) around here. And we saw a crazy bird that looked totally painted the other day, which we eventually figured out was a flicker. It had polka dots on it’s belly, and a big bright red “V” on the nape of it’s neck. It looked wild!
Also, Yay! for Doctor Who starting up again. It’s fully watching last year’s episodes with mom, and also watching the new ones the same week. (We don’t have an easy way to let mom see my computer files, so she doesn’t get to see the things I get, though the library does have a big screen tv that I’ve shown her a couple of things on, but that means she has to be at the library and have nothing else to do and no one else is around, which rarely happens.)
Oh, and happy National Power Tools Week! :-)
The song I always thought was from a phoebe turns out to be a chickadee. A phoebe actually sounds like a squeeky toy. Weird.
We went to Portland to go to Trader Joes and Whole Foods (and a couple other short stops) with our friends Michael and Sydney. Michael was Blair’s old boyfriend (who was at the Common Ground Fair with her several years ago), and Sydney is his mom. They are nice folks, are similar in life-style as Mom and I, and we have a fairly regular Monday afternoon trip into Waterville with them these days, which works out nicely for us. Michael is also on the library’s board of directors with Mom, and is giving her support in this little drama we’ve been having. Hopefully that will all subside tonight with the emergency board meeting they are having. Tomorrow is the big garden groundbreaking event there, with the new community garden I’m starting. There is a lot of support for it, so hopefully the grumpy library guys will not get in the way. :-) But I’m toning it down a bit, just in case, and planning on just doing a little right now. Sydney is excited about it too, since she and Michael live in the woods by the big lake on route 3, and so she doesn’t have any really good space to garden.
Dominic’s birthday was Wednesday, too, and that was difficult for Mom. She’s still struggling to be herself, and to take good care of herself, and I wish I could help her more. But she’s not really sure what she wants/needs, and doesn’t really want to think about it, which makes it all that much harder.
Mom bought and watched a whole pile of movies in honor of Dominic. His life really was mostly watching movies and gardening. It’s a little too early to do much gardening right now though. There is still a tiny bit of naturally piled snow in the yard, in the shade, and it did indeed snow for about two minutes yesterday here in the yard. I do have a tiny cold frame going with some mescalin (lettuces and other greens) growing slowly in the garden space Mom has offered me. And, of course, a bunch of seedlings started. Including lots of basil! :-)
I really wanted to come down to Camberville for the Science Festival (to play), and for Parts and Crafts vacation week (to teach), but I just don’t have any money for the bus. I can pretty much always find a place to crash for a short trip, and the Parts and Crafts folks would love me to teach and even use their space as Binikou headquarters, but the bus is so expensive and I don’t want to stay too long in a space unless people really have an abundance of it, which is rare in the city.
Doctor Who starts up tomorrow. I don’t think I’ll be able to get it until next week though, since we usually leave the library at 2ish, which is too early for it to be up in the usual places. It’s also a bit sad, given the news about Elizabeth Sladen (Sarah Jane) dying from medical attacks (aka “Cancer treatment”).
Today is sunny, and the cat is warm and fuzzy. So that’s good. :-)