Expected an upbeat rush from the Ripple the World breakfast Thursday am and got what I came for. Trathen Heckman, founder of Daily Acts, deep ecology group that puts on the luscious veggie breakfast (3rd year), Larry Robinson, poet and sometime Mayor of Sebastopol, Sonoma County Supervisors Shirlee Zane and Efren Carrillo – so many friends and people I respect and admire in one room of 590 or so…exhilarating!
More so because I was joined by close friends who had never met, Robbie Leeds, sometime stage manager and publicist who now hails from Sonoma (worked on six UNICEF State of the World press conferences w. me and SF friends); used to go to Mother Jones‘ Lunchbunch monthly for years, more – and Sebastopolian communitarian, Art Kopecky, who told me his yearly bonzai show also takes place in the Santa Rosa Veteran’s Memorial Auditorium which Daily Acts had chosen for this gathering.
Great fun introducing guys with deep communal roots and beliefs. Art wrote two books on his tribe, New Buffalo, and Return to New Buffalo (Taos, New Mexico commune). Read his Open Mic column in this week’s Bohemian where he calls for an Age of Aquarius to replace “the broken record” of our struggling/failing economy.
Learned more of Robbie’s tribe, most of whom still live at their commune in Oregon. Followed him home across incredible scenic drive of Sonoma surrounds to his peaceful home near Jack London State Park – full of artwork, working nature-scape outdoors, photos of long time friends and family indoors. Took a long look at his passive solar heating system which starts up when the leaves fall off the tree above the house in winter. Good planning, working with the seasons and elements!
Back at Ripple the World breakfast, I noted dear friends who have already worked through that system, Ellen Bicheler, who used to hold down the fort for Daily Acts, now held by Erin Axelrod, outreach coordinator extraordinaire! Kelley Rajala, founder, GoLocal Sonoma County, now moving on to closer association with Transition Town USA. Trathen Heckman announced as the new Board Chair of Transition Town USA – taking the good works of Daily Acts national! And he received this year’s Leadership Institute Award as the top ecology educator for Sonoma County.
So – I say keeping in this stream is wise; it is a good, healthy stream, thoughtful, with the strength of many many arms growing food and saving water (350 Garden Challenge having planted and amended 629 gardens in SoCo), the inspirational words that come to us through Trathen and company, Larry Robinson, and this time Supervisor Shirlee Zane. Not just hope but good work is represented and there is plenty for all. See and go there often.