Friday, April 11, 2014
Thursday, January 31, 2013
one of the superheroes who i rode with in the Michigan Haul of Justice recently set down some of her reflections in this wonderful piece. hope you will dive in for a good read. i still have some writing yet to share on my experience during that amazing ride. the words of the SerendipiTease can tell you of much of what i also experienced.
if you're more in the mood for a watching a video, you can learn some history of the bicycling superheroes and their headquarters, the Possibility Aliance, from a series titled 'greatest american heroes' on youtube.
Tuesday, December 4, 2012
i recently took a look at the outline of the shift musical that my friend samara shaw put together. the 'rainbow warriors' song which came through me on this trip is in there twice; beginning of scene four and then towards the very end. i'm so honored to be a part of this!
the project got the support it needed on kickstarter! thanks to those who pitched in. there are so many worthy projects looking for funding these days. i'm going to keep doing my best to put money towards the world i want to live in. also i see there are opportunities outside of the financial realm to support it! i know with the power of love we can transform this world!
Thursday, November 15, 2012
on the east coast it was not such a good apple year, but back in the NW it was! as i rode through this rural area i passed by many apple trees on the side of the road. from those that looked obviously neglected i harvested some, filling the last bit of space in my luggage.
at a produce stand in a big gravel lot where two main roads intersect i stop for a drink of water. i follow my impulse to connect with the vendor and put out the positive vibes. he is a really nice guy who has been doing this for many years. he is happy about the big truck he recently got a good deal on at auction. friends of his are farmers in eastern washington and sell him this produce cheaply that he then drives over here to the west side to sell. he gives me sample slices of the honey crisp and pink lady apples, and upon farewell he gives me two oranges.
soon i arrive at the home of the folks i visited fifteen months ago, at the beginning of the trip. the veggie-table ultra still stands by the road in their front yard. there are some new plantings and generous mulching (such wisdom) in front of the house, where i am told someone made a mess of tire tracks. they turned that negative right around and now have some food-bearing plants where there was only lawn before.
the husband was off at work, so i visited with the wife and their two lovely children. the son is just learning to talk and kept telling me 'no'. he needed a nap, and fell asleep at the table while eating a grilled cheese sandwich. i stayed awake throughout the tastey experience. her home-made bread, a recipe from nourishing traditions, was wonderfully moist, lofty, and flavorful. we talked about many things and i sang a couple of songs for them. i was in heaven!
i let hannah know that i would love to come help out in the garden if i was around in the spring. she said they have considered having an intern, but don't know where to house them. we also talked about the option of having young folks from the area come to work and learn about this kind of life. possibilities...
they have two goats now in addition to the four sheep. it is becoming a quite intensive little farm!
no luck hitching first spot in chehalis, but a latino family in a pickup donates $10. next entrance north on I-5 i get a ride with a man who does horse-shoing. his sister knows a thing or two about meditation, there are prayer beads hanging from mirror. she is in thailand. he offers a place to stay and ride the next day to Oly, where he will be going for work. we decide to check out the train option and i decide to take it because the fare is not too much (the donation helps!). i give him one of the apples, he gives me a knot-work bracelet.
i ask a woman and use her cell phone to call my folks in seattle to let them know i am on my way. this is the kind of thing i often overlook, but i know they appreciate. my dad insists on picking me up at the train station. i had imagined riding up the hill to the house, but i surrender to his kind gesture, as i know it will make him happy. i tell this woman a bit about the HOOP TOUR and she seems to dig the idea of the 'economy of generosity'. she accepts one of the apples i harvested. when we get on the train she helps me with my bags! later she serves me a cup of green tea! this contagious spirit of connection and generosity really brings me joy and i put some of that energy into writing a letter.
when my father picks me up at the station i know the HOOP TOUR has finally come to an end. the magic will surely continue to unfold in my life, and the love never stops arrising, if i can just ramain aware of it.
Monday, November 12, 2012
Hoop Rider had been happily stranded in spokane for two additional nights at the home of ran prieur after two days of attempting to hitch a ride to the final destination of the HOOP TOUR, the NW Vipassana Center. the thought had crossed his mind that there might be a rideshare to the course, which are arranged through a rideshare board hosted by the center, but he thought it unlikely that he could find another server coming from spokane who could get him there early on the first day, before students arrived. when it looked unlikely that hitching would get him there on time, he had sent an e-mail to the center letting them know. in response he was told about a student coming from montana who was offering a ride! Hoop made the phone call and all was soon arranged.
the drive followed the route that Hoop Rider had imagined he would hitch-bike. this was from spokane to yakima, then taking highway 12 over White Pass to the west side of the Cascades. the conversation in the car flowed energetically, with a few breaks of peaceful silence. Hoop Rider shared the food he had brought, including a really good organic granny smith apple grown in washington recently and some of the last bag of Loki salmon jerkey. Kent, the driver, gave Hoop the last of his grass-fed steak leftovers.
Hoop was glad to meet another guy excited about working with nature through gardening, and doing inner, spiritual work through vipassana meditation. Kent lives on twenty acres in rural montana. his house is small and without electricity.
the center welcomed Hoop with comforting familiarity. there were some familiar faces there to greet him as well. of the eight other servers, two were people he had met previously on the HOOP TOUR! one of them was a young man named andrew who had been the course manager of the one Hoop had sat in Georgia. he had traveled by bicycle, following a similar route, and arrived at this center a bit earlier. hoop was excited to see him and both promised to share details of their experience when there was time.
the other familiar server was reintroduced as This. she had gone by a different name when Hoop had met her outside the natural food cooperative in New Orleans. she was one of the ones in the spontaneous song circle! it was such a surprise to see her that he didn't recognize her at first. she said that she'd been inspired through meeting Hoop to go to her first vipassana course. since then she had served and sat others.
what a happy convergence of meditating travelers!
another server he was happy to see was joe, who had served the first course Hoop sat back in 2010. joe's spirit was one that Hoop had felt a strong resonation with each time he had seen him since then. he had also been around when Hoop served the course at the beginning of the trip. he was the facilities manager for much of his long-term service. the kind of leadership joe offered as the kitchen manager of this course was flexible and loving. he did not seem to allow his reactive mind to get in the way of his heart very often.
Tuesday, October 30, 2012
the weather was pretty nice the day i arrived in spokane. ran showed me around his front and back yards, pointing out all the plants he is trying to establish in the beginnings of a food forest. the goumi plants are off to a great start, and the apple tree in the front looks happy. i felt so jazzed to be at ran's place and asked if there were any projects i could help with. we made a pile of juniper branches into smaller pieces and then tidied up his garage. he has collected lots of leaves and has some in garbage bags that he intends to crush and use as cover material in the bucket toilet if he ever runs out of sawdust. i was so happy to see this toilet when i walked into the bathroom. so sensible and simple. i saw he was peeing in jars and asked if there was one i could use. helped me feel right at home!
ran offered me some thick chicken soup that was like a thin gravy actually, thickened with rue. it was so good! ran has very similar eating habits to mine, and i kept discovering more familiar items. kombucha, kefir, pastured butter, quinoa, dried seaweed... what next?
to arrive at the vipassana meditation course on time i had decided to give myself two days of travel. the route i decided to try would be through yakima, from there taking highway 12, which passes near to the meditation center. so i looked for hosts last minute on warmshowers.org and couchsurfing.org. the morning of the 29th, when i was to set out. i finally got someone on the phone who would let me stay with them in yakima! the road there would be an adventure, and i didn't know if it would work out... but i was up for it!
ran rode with me to the freeway onramp. we were able to take the bike trail most of the way! it is a nice one! we stopped in at the main market on the way so i could look it over. main market is spokane's fantastic food cooperative! i try to visit all the food coops, which seem to be almost everywhere i travel... i got a washington grown apple and some other supplies. this is one of the most comfortable and well-stocked coops i have been to. i appreciated their use of signage, highlighting local products.
the weather was great that day and i was happy to be outdoors, even if it was near an interstate onramp. the hours passed and i tried as i always do to project good vibes and show a smile to the motorists. any one of them could be the one to pick me up! i try not to descriminate, but i can't help it. certain vehicles or traits of the driver will attract or repel me. some people look like old friends and i wonder why they don't pick me up.
after a few hours at the browne st onramp without even one person stopping for me i headed down to the maple street onramp, where the word on the street was, 'they aren't letting people fly signs.' it was not important to me so i went to try my luck there.
four cops passed me during the time i was there and none of them even slowed. one of the gave me a friendly wave. but still i had no luck catching a ride, and as the afternoon passed into early evening i knew i'd be spending another night in spokane.
another wonderful evening with ran and housemate troy! i got to make a fire in their fireplace. thanks guys for the friendly hospitality!
no luck the next day after another three hours at the maple street onramp. one guy did stop for me. he was only going a little ways, to the airforce base, so i declined. he let me use his cell phone to check on a craigslist possibility. i told him where i was headed and he said, 'can't be late to a meditation course...' or something like that. i said that i was trying to meditate and send out good vibes while on the roadside... "i must have picked up some of those vibes, because i don't usually stop." he said. that boosted my spirits.
when the rain came, then came a little harder, i decided to go back to ran's a second time. i stopped by the coop on the way back and got some groceries: red chard, broccoli, apple, rolled oats, and pastured eggs! almost went for the raw goat milk, but wimped out, forgetting that i was told never to worry about having enough money on this trip. when i told ran he was like, 'OH YEAH, raw goat milk...mmmmm' and i knew i should have gone for it. i had imagined hot chocolate and pouring some in my oatmeal...
i worked with ran a little bit on preparing the wood for building a sturdy kitchen table that he can attach his country living grain mill to. ran baked some bread, i made greens, and we collaborated on a hearty lentil soup! you can see in the pictures that the soup is garnished with a leaf of malva, or mallow, one of the most common garden weeds. another fine meal... and ran busted out his cod liver oil to share! this guy knows what's up!
i got another fire going and we enjoyed the evening in this cozy little home while the rain showered off and on outside.
when i checked my e-mail i found a message from the meditation center in response to the one i had sent about being late. in it there was a suggestion to contact a guy coming from montana who could probably give me a ride! so i called him and set that up. amazing how this worked out! why didn't i just ask for the help of the center in the first place? i had thought of it but it seemed unlikely that someone would be coming from this far east. always ask!
again i waited many hours before a ride picked me up. the cold was biting, but at about five degrees warmer it was not nearly as hard to withstand as the cold in bozeman. the greater discomfort was the aching of my feet, lower back, and shoulders from standing, holding my arm out, and holding a sign so long.
this time i got all the way to spokane from missoula with a nice man in a big truck with a covered bed. he was a born again christian and we talked quite a bit about spiritual topics. he also told me many stories from his life and i told him a few from mine. amazing guy who i felt i was 'supposed to meet'. he drove me all the way to the doorstep of my friend's house.