Veggie Voyagers

Couple travelled 30 states and 3 Canadian provinces between 7/07 and 5/08 running their 1987 Ford truck on straight veggie oil. The blog continues with a focus on the natural world and energy politics from a personal perspective

Sunday, January 30, 2011

2012 Meditation

We are together in Durham for our meditation deepening. Our teacher Don Kollmar ( has been reading about all the 2012 stuff that I have been ignoring. He explained to us what the Mayan prophecies are and some of the other information about catastrophic changes on earth that are projected for December, 2012. After that I spent a huge amount of meditation time in my thoughts, planning how to survive but at a certain point I surrendered to the idea of a known end-point to life and it became like a deep chasm of love and embrace of all. Who knows though? All I know is that panic and fear don't serve.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

My bro!

Well gee, after all this time blogging you'd think I'd have better control of the order of my photos...but no.. Ok. We went to Reno and Lake Tahoe with my brother. Michael processed veggie oil for the journey and we also sold the VV book along the way. On the way home tonight we stopped in Chilcoot at Simple Fuels Recycling and picked up 45 gallons of bio-diesel from a very sweet guy and this is his veggie storage area. I have hope now for Chico that we can get a co-op going with is bio-diesel...

The main star of the show this long weekend though was my dear brother Warren. I hadn't seen him for three years when we visited him and his family in North Georgia while we were on the Veggie Voyage. He was on the west coast for an A.L.S. symposium and was able to carve out a little time, but also had to work some. He and Michael did a day and a half skiing at Heavenly while I messed around riding my bike and skiing a golf course and wandering the lake edge. The main thing was the memories. I've just craved seeing him and so it really satisfied a need I's hard when both your parents are gone and you have just one sibling and no other close family. Besides that, he's a wonderful, compassionate person.

While Warren and Michael watched the Packers game I went up one of the Heavenly bunny hills but even that was intimidating to me. I just enjoyed the views and the crisp air and tried to listen to what the parents were telling their little kids and tried to emulate the 5 year olds.

Stateline, NV was looking kind of shabby, especially the Horizon where Warren stayed. It has been a good place for us over the years. We've always parked in the lot and watched movies there but now it appears to be going under financially...quite forlorn but on the 15th floor we still got a wonderful view of the lake. What matters isn't the rise and fall of human structures it's the health of the lake and I guess you know how that is going. Still so beautiful though. I feel very grateful and very lucky.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Calling Dr. King

Stayed up late last night watching a film about the plight of Ethiopian coffee farmers who can't get a fair wage for their coffee and therefore are dependent on food aid and can't educate their kids. The prices for the 4 leading coffee buyers are set on the NY stock exchange and coffee drinkers have no idea how dire it is for the farmers. The film is called Black Gold and the answer is FAIR TRADE which cuts out the middle man so coffee goes straight to the roaster and farmers get a living wage.
It is like a giant wave of recognition this Dr. King weekend. The Teach In on Saturday, the Last Chance for Eden film and discussion at Trinity Methodist on racism and relationships, the amazing commemoration at the church, King's speeches this morning on Democracy Now and now listening to David Guzzetti's music... my heart is in the hands of the King of Love.
The earth allows us this time to be inside and in the mood for listening and thinking. Walking around the land with Michael and Sasha we just wander without much to say. The pussy willows are already emerging on the border and the lilac leaves have been pushing out since the solstice. The earth barely rests but for me this is a very regenerative time. A very important time.

I've lost my source of bio-diesel and have to make personal changes so that is one thing but the other is to movement build toward sustainability. (Below is a picture from the water transfer meeting. I've never known the community so unified, we were united against letting southern California suck out our groundwater.) We have to recognize our other general interests-- to hang on to the benefits we have earned, to protect the vulnerable, to have meaningful jobs, to end senseless wars and bring troops and money home, to protect biodiversity and get a handle on the messaging which divides us and promotes intolerance. One earth, one people... we need far greater equality and thoughtfulness. Dr. King has taught us that and I am deeply touched by this "Holiday" of opportunity to come together.

Groups in Chico I urge all to join and support: The Chico Peace and Justice Center, Butte Environmental Council, AquAlliance and KZFR Community Radio... to move in community, to build and support these groups, to give of your time and energy and make this community, this state, this country and planet a place for the survival and health of all.
Lastly, never forget the truth of the past and the continuing pain of oppressed people and how little time we have, all of us.

Monday, January 10, 2011

400 Posts!

Michael is still away skiing in Utah but I got a bit brave and asked a friend to go skiing. He in turn invited friends who live along the Sacramento so we had a foursome. It has been really foggy in the valley for the last week and yesterday it finally lifted. This was how it looked from their house across the river yesterday when we left though.
Sasha really misses Michael but she's putting up with me, after a fashion. She still comes into the bedroom every morning to carefully investigate his side of the bed. She thinks I have shrunk him perhaps?
We've had a lot of heavy frosts and last night was clear and beautiful but in the morning every thing was etched in ice when Sasha and I went out to walk around on the land. I was seeing the beauty of it in everything, especially in the stalled progress of the budding trees. This is good. It's like a real winter not some relentless turn of seasons. Winter should put at least a temporary break on things and it seems to have done that on and off this winter.

This last shot was taken yesterday at McGowan Lake, up toward Lassen. Jim Dwyer, poet-librarian, carried his saucer our entire plus five mile snowshoe/ski trip so he deserves to at least get some recognition for this feat.
Keep warm enough.

Monday, January 3, 2011

quietly into the new

It's been some quiet time since Michael left in the VV to ski in Utah for a couple of weeks. Yesterday I visited my friend Ann (age 94) and while I was there a pine siskin, a wee bird, flew into her glass door. It was just stunned but we were able to look at it in wonder together. That was the high point of the day. I love that woman but she is fixing to die, as they say.
Today I went out to visit Howard (age 87.) I'd been looking forward to seeing him since his bday in December so it was a perfect day with plenty of sun... not great for photography due to the sharp, hard light but the sycamores were elegant and I had a wander along Pine Creek to suit my need for beauty just fine. His little dog Calista is on her very last legs so there's another dear creature soon behind that memory curtain.

I don't have a whole lot on my mind. Sort of letting the papers go unread. Watching documentaries. One just now on John Trudell. His life message is about the kinship with earth and this is so personal... 'feel bad when my clippers are dull and I tear a branch when I prune...gotta get them sharpened. And, have a bit of a feud going right now with the guy who uses a high pressure hose to clean sidewalks downtown. He sprays all the cigarette butts and garbage off the curb to be washed into the storm drains to the creeks. I have been putting off going to the city about him but I have to tomorrow before I start my next work cycle. I tried to talk to him and he just gives b.s. about how the people who drop garbage should pick it up... yes, well?

It is the time of squash, chard, kale and persimmons. I'm trying to cut back on my carbs and devote myself more to walking and yoga... thus, I ache but feel good in the stillness of these days and the freedom of just being in my own rhythms... even if they don't exactly line up with anyone else's. Have to watch out not to squander too much more of my precious bio-diesel. Hate going to a diesel pump with my "bio-diesel- no war required" bumpersticker. Best in New Year grace and consciousness to you in the beauty of the season.