Sunday, June 29, 2008

Alternative Lifesyles

Dirty hands, iced tea, garden fragrances thick in the air anda blanket of color before me, who could ask for more?- Bev Adams, Mountain Gardening by the Gardening Gal
I had the cable TV downgraded to basic cable (four major networks only). Last week when it was raining a lot, #2 daughter asked me to watch a movie with her. The only thing on TV at that time of day were the soaps or shows giving prime examples of how not to live your life (tested 19 men to be the father). I told her to go pick a VHS/DVD out, she picked the Wilderness Family.
A quick synopsis is a family leaves the city hassle behind to go to the mountains and live off the land. It’s entertaining but not a very realistic set of movies - outrun a grizzly, tangle with a cougar and only get a scratch. But what I have liked about these movies is the idea that it can be done. I also like their enthusiasm, to awake each morning and find something new and amazing. Some people move to the country and try changing it to be what they left instead of trying to immerse themselves in their new enviroment.

So after having watched these movies, I was on the internet and saw on a blog “what ten things you would not be able to give up to go green.” And with my mind still thinking about the Wilderness Family, I wondered what I would not give up to go live off the land…indoor plumbing, computer, digital camera, Tylenol, possibly a washing machine of some sort, maybe the
greenhouse and then I couldn’t think of anything else. Now the man could not downgrade more than we already have, take away his power tools and remotes and he would be lost.

The Wilderness Family makes it look so easy. In reality, there are days now with all the modern conveniences and tools that it gets discouraging looking at the to do list to survive. The price of grain and hay has skyrocketed. Sometimes I think it would be easier to just get rid of all the animals/gardens, move to the city and buy from the store-sort of doing a reverse Wilderness Family. It would give us hours of extra time-no barns to be cleaned, fence repairs, feed runs, hay baling, weeds to pull, canning/freezing, public transportation instead of a garage/gas bill. The kids could go to museums, plays and go to the zoo for an animal fix. The downside being, I would be on drugs or in therapy to deal with all the people and noise, the kids would be afraid to leave the apartment, and the man would be a couch potato. We would not be happy.
So after a week of playing chauffer with a gas bill to match Trailways, I awoke yesterday to eat a breakfast of wild black raspberries picked on the way to the garden. I may end up giving the paycheck to the animals and garage/gas station but those raspberries go hand in hand with this lifestyle and I think it even tips the scale in its favor. I may not give up things to live off the land but I can’t give up the land to go live in the city.


david santos said...

Very nice post, Judy, very nice!
Nice photos and very nice colors,
I loved it!
Happy day

Tam said...


cyndy said...

"I may not give up things to live off the land but I can’t give up the land to go live in the city." can take the girl out of the country, but you cannot take the country out of the girl (THANK GOODNESS!!)

Don't ever change! And please don't ever move to the city!

Anonymous said...

Mom, no wonder I had you write all my reports in high school!!

X said...

nice nails ! country life has been good to you J.! be proud !