Fall and we’re all ampted up to get stuff done before winter, the holidaze. Tough to keep deadlines whirring while thinking of all the problems that beset man and woman kind – but, thankfully, some skillful, dedicated people are in the trenches daily to do the heavy lifting for and with us. Transition US and Daily Acts are working overtime with allies Permaculture Skills Center, Oxidental Arts and Ecology and scores of friends to produce the first ever convergence just one week before the Bioneers Conference where some honed their skills and fed their brains and spirits for years to challenge the many-headed monster known as climate change, the fierce dragon grown from man’s greedy search for loot at the expense of the planet. This is my blog so you get my opinion.
The “permies” as many call themselves, the Transition Town people, Daily Acts, all our related sister and brother groups, are meeting up at the Solar Living Institute October 9-12 at the Solar Living Institute Thurs. – Mon. – hard to even pick which days if you’re not blessed with enough time and money for the whole enchilada. Believe we’re picking Sat. and Sun. and looking for our tent in the shed or a borrowed one.
All this wonderfulness happens at Hopland’s Real Goods/Solar Living Institute and we’ll be delighted to get up there and we’ll undoubtedly check out an opinion or two about how and how much solar on our farm could work. It’s gorgeous country in those parts – but more importantly, its a positive and believeable message these stalwards are pursuading us to adopt: that we not only can make a wrinkle in time to actually do something useful to help restore the earth and ourselves to balance, but that we can also do that with a little humor and grace – the ENGAGED OPTIMISM that is key to the permaculture and transition movements mostly here and in Europe but spreading across the globe if at all possible!
Rob Hopkins from Transition U.K. is definitely worth following and I’m hoping he’ll come as a “luminary” Sat. night. Also love the book they’re boosting, Playing With Time: Making Art As If the World Mattered, about injecting culture into this movement. I’ll attempt to adapt some of author, Lucy Neal’s projects into the life of our barn/playhouse when that is completed just outside Petaluma at Oasis Community Farm where we live. Also promised myself to request that Shakespeare Books in Paris carry this permaculture/culture book – why shouldn’t kids from the Sorbonne get to read about permaculture? They don’t know what that is in Paris – and we’re just now getting it clear here.
PERMACULTURE: (WIKIPEDIA) Permaculture is a system of agricultural and social design principles centered around simulating or directly utilizing the patterns and features observed in natural ecosystems. See for image.
I like the timely focus on diversity:
“Diversity is a core principle in creating living systems. That’s why I’m glad the Permaculture community is working hard to include more people of color and youth at the upcoming Building Resilient Communities Convergence. Cultural diversity will lead to a better conference which will produce a more resilient movement.” -Van Jones
Bestselling Author, Founder of Green For All, Rebuild The Dream; Ella Baker Center for Human Rights
Resilience and Regeneration. What can come from this? Here are goals listed on the site:
NorCal Community Resilience Network
The 2015 Convergence is excited to help launch the Northern California Community Resilience Network, started by Transition and Permaculture leaders to catalyze and support grassroots groups and leaders who are actively building resilient, locally-oriented and regenerative communities. We want to help channel the enthusiasm from the Convergence into a structure to help support permaculture projects and community organizing efforts, from a Regional Board of Directors to local committees.
Our goals include:
To promote community-based, nature-inspired projects based on permaculture principles.
To enhance collaborative efforts, communication, peer-to-peer learning and provide/share resources for leaders and groups
To share and inspire models for resilient homes, neighborhoods and communities.
To cultivate a more integrated and holistic permaculture-based community resilience movement that represents the diversity of Northern California.
What a mouthful! What a wonderful opportunity to connect with like-minded people doing restorative work in our shattered world. I know, it doesn’t look shattered out my Petaluma countryside windows, but the smoke from FIRE SEASON reminds me through my stinging eyes that something is very wrong. Fire Season to Flood Season to Pollen Season, the dust-carrying wind’s increase and I’m a red-eyed wonder. But wouldn’t want to live anywhere else when we can and will make a difference here in place. With this community of merry permies.
Our broad-vision Gov. Jerry Brown started California Conservation Corps eons ago to begin to protect and restore natural conditions; now he’s passed the strongest legislation in the country to reduce and reverse green house gas emissions.
It may be too little too late, but we can at least gather with our friends, who help take away the pain of the results of our greedy attempt to cover the earth with houses and asphalt, gas fumes and advertizing, and get back at least somewhat to where we belong. In the gardens that will feed us.
Next up: Daily Act’s fantastic Ripple the World Breakfast at Santa Rosa Vets Bldg, THurs. Oct. 29th, 8am. It’s remarkably inspiring! Loads of the same people show up to melt together and the food is great. I’m a table captain 3rd time. Contact me if you want to be at our table.