Friday, December 29, 2023
Thursday, December 28, 2023
Back in the late 70s I read an article about a man living a minimalist life. Not off in some ashram (or van) in the wilderness, but right there in Los Angeles, surrounded by conspicuous consumers flouting their material accumulation.
Fresh out of college, I was living a minimalist life too, but not as a choice. I didn’t have much money, not much more than my clothes, some dishes and a handful of books. I was renting a furnished apartment because I didn’t own a bed or chair. I was hoping to afford a radio soon. Maybe a TV. That’s why I was working, right? To be able to buy stuff that would make life more comfortable, that would make me feel successful.
But here was this guy wanting less. Wanting things simpler. He seemed crazy.
What stuck in my mind all these years was his bedroom. It was simply a mattress in the middle of the room. No other furnishings or decorations. Not even anything in the closet. A bed room. “It’s where I sleep. What more do I need when I’m unconscious?”
So here I am all these years later living a minimalist life. I don’t have the luxury of a dedicated bed room, though. Everything is in one space. And that’s fine. Not crazy at all.
Monday, December 25, 2023
Friday, December 22, 2023
I had sensed the humidity building — the type of humidity that made me flee the South and made me grumpy when I’d visit the Pacific Northwest. My washcloth wouldn’t dry. My hands felt clammy. I checked the forecast. Yup, rain on the way. One of this season’s El Nińo storms. It started during the night and continued through the afternoon, with occasional thunder.
Of course, I got wondering about the ground conditions in this patch of desert. It’s hard packed gritty sand/dirt. No layer of “desert pavement” stones, but firm enough that tire tracks barely show — when dry. Around noon it looked like most of the water was soaking in. How much water could this ground hold before becoming a problem? By about 2:00 there was standing water outside the van approximately an inch deep. It didn’t seem any deeper an hour later, but it looked like I was in the middle of a lake.
Then the sun came out and there was a double rainbow. And I had better light to asses my situation. Not that bad. Maybe not bad at all.
It has been a couple of hours since the photo above and water is no longer standing around the Rolling Steel Tent. It’s only visible in the lower areas. Anyway, I don’t need to go anywhere for a few days, so I can let the area dry out more. In my home for the holidays.