June 24, 2015
I’m looking at our world in a brand new way this year. Life is fragile, and we are part of that fragile fabric. Aware of the ephemeral, I decided to gift my family with the first step in a survival kit. Ever since, I’ve been watching the small habits and charming humor in the people around me. I’ve been smelling the morning, greeting the raccoon and the chickadees, really studying the texture, the light and the shadows in places that I often take for granted.
I’ve had some readers comment that they don’t want to be around after the apocalypse, (or after the Great Subduction Zone Earthquake).
I understand that feeling. Recovery is work, and fear, and discovered loss. Loss would make recovery seem like shoving one foot in front of the other, even though we also might, at the same time, discover people and things that have not been lost.
But I have a list of what I want to be around for – people, places and ideas I want to assist in recovery, if I’m still here.
Of course, family is the beginning of that list: Woody, my resilient and positive husband, our wonderful kids, grandkids, brothers and sisters, all the in-laws and out. And then friends, my great, close and wise friends. Kids I’ve taught and get a kick out of because of their humor, their imaginations and their energy.
I would hope to find all these people, though some may be missing. Together, we survivors could rebuild our world, create support, maybe even improve our community, over time.
And I would look for my neighbors, some of whom already are friends, and some who might become better friends if we have to rely on each other.
And I will want to see what flowers arise from the ashes during the next spring. Fireweed and pine trees open first after forest fires. What will grow through our broken concrete? I want to be as strong and persistent as those flowers.
Some folks who’ve insisted they don’t want to be around afterward also discuss the innate savagery of people following a disaster. Yes, we all have that capacity. Indeed we do. But we all also have the capability for mutual building. I want to be here to help encourage the building.
Is this blog a downer? I’m thinking here about the people I appreciate, believe in, and with whom I want to recover. You’ve got that list inside of you as well.
So, let’s plan and get ready for the next event, whether the event is bugs in our water or the earth moving under our feet. Here are some photos of things I’ll watch for and nurture afterward.
Next issue of Rae: Always Asking will be about cooking after the big event. Tune in and see what I’m learning and what resources I’m finding.