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

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Drone Protest

For a long time I have been concerned about unmanned predator and reaper drones that kill without conscience. People in the border areas of Pakistan live in terror because death can come at any time. This is terrorism and it is profoundly inhumane and illegal and it creates greater enmity against this country for the grave injustice of wanton violence. We joined Code Pink, The Nevada County Peace Center, Military Families Against the War, Veterans for Peace in solidarity with thousands of people of Pakistan demonstrating in Dharna (a sit-in protest) against the US Drone Strikes that are killing thousands of innocents. We were at Beale AFB where the Global Hawk surveillance drone is controlled. We vigiled from 3pm through about 11am and were joined by remarkable young women from the (PTI- Movement for Justice) in the morning and their voices were heard on KZFR. We all felt it had been an excellent vigil since this was the biggest vigil yet (about 30 of us,) many base goers took our hand-outs, and we got good community radio coverage between the Bay Area's KPFA and our own North Valley KZFR as well as having an excellent teach-in about the drones for our own information.

It's critical for us all to recognize that the Pandora's Box of unmanned killer aircraft is costly in many ways to the future peace of our world. Google the article "Convenient Killing" by Cole and Dobbing to learn more about this and get in touch with me if you would like to participate in future vigils. Thanks to all the good people who we met and stood with and people around the world who work for peace.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Shasta and Lassen

Well, I'm heading into being 64--thus the finger signs here at the old ski bowl at Mt. Shasta. We skied from Bunny Flat to the ski bowl by the road which is still closed at 7000 feet. The ski area was closed after a series of avalanches and because the road was hard to keep plowed plus it edges a sacred spring of the Wintu people. We stayed up there and watched the constantly changing clouds over the summit for a long time.

We ate lunch quite comfortably on an abandoned snow mobile and Sasha and Michael had to mug for the camera.

I got good views of mountain bluebirds fly catching regular looking flies along the snow line... something I'd never seen before.

The next day we went down to the north entrance of Lassen National Park and first rode our bikes in about three miles to where the plows had stopped (from the Devastated Area.) We skied at sunset around Hat Creek Meadow and the next day Michael loaded up the skis (the photo is out of sequence) and we rode to the end of the road and then skied up the park road where it appeared no one had been-- out past Summit Lake and around the edge of the park with views out to Lake Almanor. The snow was still about 5 feet deep but when we got back to the valley it was 100 degrees plus someone rammed the back of the VV-- first accident since we backed into that guy at the Nuclear Power Plant in 2007!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Women/Canyon rim

When we stay home on the weekend I get a big dose of amazing people. First here is Phyllis Cullen, anesthesiologist by trade but someone who has not just spent years creating pediatric respiratory intensive care units in Central and South America, bringing docs up for training and instituting Project Saves (recycled medical waste to countries in need,) but is also a fine arts quilter and painter. We were floored by her talent at this exhibit at the Ave. 9 Gallery.

Then the humble flower arranging of Ka, a tiny Hmong woman who does nothing but farm work all day every day but still combines her growing and creative zest for her incredible arrangements. Here she swung the bouquet in front of her face to avoid the camera but her smile and farming ability I've been delighting in for years. I wish the Hmong women who sell flowers could have a collective flower shop of their own. I dream of winning the lottery (even though I don't play) to underwrite something like a cultural center/flower shop they could develop.

Michael is home again and we are catching up with our wandering. This out to the Chico Creek south rim, through and west of the frisbee golf course. Since it has been so moist there are still wildflowers up there and the frisbee golfers haven't denuded everything. I don't like to be negative about them since they are having non-motorized fun but cigarette butts are bad enough downtown (where I picked about 100 out of the planter box at 3rd and Main on Saturday.)

Lastly, Good Luck to Deanna Alexis who is off to teach in South Africa this summer/winter for them. We went to her benefit last night and the photos didn't come out but the memories did. Sweet!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011


We completed our summer Complete Self Attunement meditation retreat yesterday. As always it brought me many hours of inner exploration from subtle energetic states that are very nourishing. Our group was small this year and we had perfect rainy weather.
Poor poppy didn't look so happy though.

My friend Katy who hosted us had the most interesting way to plant... directly into sacks of organic fertilizer...

and despite the cool weather this bee chose my time of gawking over this (?) gaudy agapantha flower to nose dive deep into its center.

Meanwhile, over in Hamilton City, where I roam around at lunch time, the nopales in people's yards are flowering and paddling their big flat leaves to the sun. In Hamilton they aren't just decorative. People scrape off the spines, boil them and enjoy them in many recipes.

Michael is still skiing down on the east side of the Sierra in the Veggie Voyager. A fat slow moving raccoon has taken up in his work and truck park area. I'm enjoying our cautious truce but don't think it will be able to maintain there once Sasha returns.

My main critter problem remains the voles. The earth vibrator thingies don't work... my lettuce went prematurely rootless and one of my kiwi starts got the root chop too. It promises to be a garden with a tinge of struggle this year. I wish yours better.