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Wisdom of the West

Last time I walked down to that Little Free Library, I had a pile to donate and I wasn’t intending to pick anything up. But then there was this. “The Wisdom of the West” compiled by Criswell Freeman. I opened it and found several pertinent sayings and thought I ought to try to remember them. I walked away, then walked back and got the book.

“I would rather live as we do, in a sod house we own, than to rent and have someone boss us around.”
This is the heart of the matter. I’ve dreamed my whole life of a place where I could feel like I belong there. I belong with the darling of course and would live with him under a bridge if necessary; but it would also be peachy to have a home assigned on earth. This is where Janel goes. When we are done playing with Janel, we put her back here.

We finally have a chance to own our own place without obligation. That’s the big dream and doesn’t have to include the creature comforts, hehe, it’s all about surviving that first winter, and if you’re lucky, write a book about it later. Now I get to do that, too.

“Where would you go? Back to the place where you were dissatisfied before you came out here?”
This is a concept that might help me at the new place when I begin to get cold. In fact, I think it already has. We were out there camping for two weeks when it was 24 degrees. I sometimes wished I could go– well, not home, this is home!

Not back. Anything but that.

After only a couple weeks, I did begin to wish I could go inside. We’ll have an inside soon enough. In the meantime, ONWARD.

“People on the Pacific Coast think of themselves as belonging to the “coast”; the “West” is quite something else again.”
We have been marveling and giggling over the concept of heading east to get to the West.

I spent my early years deep in the heart of the old West, far south of here in gold country, where except for the cars and telephones it was still 1849. That place was excellent in all ways except that it was, unfortunately, politically connected with Cali (cough) Forn (cough) – I can’t say it. Anyhoo the West was alive there and I loved it. Now we’re heading East in good old WA to get to something a bit more West.

“Don’t let what you cannot do interfere with what you can do.”
Right. There are limitations, but we have “a lot” and we can do “all kinds of things” and it is deeply satisfying to do as much as possible with what we have, rather than to just stay stuck. Knowing you’re doing everything you can do is all that’s necessary to be able to sleep at night.

“We have learned to follow the customs of the country, and get along as best we can with what we have.”
Exactly. I dunno about the customs, but I’m def making do. Funny, but I think I’ve been preparing for this my whole life. I’ve scoffed at spoiled American women but when it came time to leave “civilization”, it turned out I’d been there so long, I had gotten a bit dependent. I’ve scoffed too much to deserve any sympathy! Toughen up.

Can’t we live without hot running water? Can’t we wake up cold and make a fire like our ancestors did, who craved freedom? Can’t we do without the internet? *cries*

I’ve collected candles all my life. Whenever I saw someone’s used wedding tapers on the giveaway table, I picked them up. Now I finally get to need them! And the wool blankets, I’m gonna need those, for clothing, for real. I have a self-constructed hand crank sewing machine for exactly this exigency! In case there’s no more electricity. There’s no more electricity, so yay. Let’s go.

I was one of many who was a bit crestfallen when Y2K didn’t happen. I was hoping for TEOTWAWKI while I was still young. And now it is! Because I brought it on myself!

“A dose of adversity is often as needful as a dose of medicine.”
It’s true. I can feel it coming. A bit of actual discomfort might just do wonders for my seething. There’s no time to be nuts when you need to carry some water to wash dishes and get the firewood in before dark.

“The cowards never started.”

Then I’m already a winner!






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