When we first moved to Darwin’s View, I wanted to save the world. I wondered, “Is there any hope?” I have learned that that is not the question we need to be asking ourselves. The real question is, “What am I going to do to change things?”

Life Off the Grid…

My husband and I are a modern day rendition of Lisa and Oliver Douglas of Green Acres renown. Replace Lisa’s New York City with Providence, Rhode Island; Hootersville with Jaffrey; and Green Acres with Darwin’s View, and you have us. The difference? Carl and I live during the Anthropocene age, a human-made epoch. Thus, we named our home Darwin’s View with intention: “survival of the fittest”, “natural selection”, “evolution”.

We moved from Providence to Jaffrey in December of 2012 to live off-grid with our two cats, Nick and Nora; and Big Red and his five hens. Just for a few months, to make sure our newly built, off-grid, weekend cabin wouldn’t freeze its pipes. You might remember that winter. Blizzards-of-the-century every other day?

With nothing better to do than watch the snow fly, wonder what I was doing t/here, and read really depressing books on our species’ fallout on the world, I declared war against climate change. That conflict rapidly morphed into a two-front war against Demo-n-Capitalism. But, as winter turned to spring, summer, fall and another winter, it became clear that I wasn’t having much affect. No surprise. I had gotten distracted, busy with other things. Like how to flap one’s wings while chasing a cricket, or atrophy into corpse pose in a dusty area of the driveway. Or to plant, not bury, a seed, which requires one to give that seed a drop or two of water.

Word from the semi-wise: it is much easier to write about chickens and their life dramas, and one’s own life on a New Hampshire homestead, than about the consequences of Homo sapiens’ alienation from Mother Nature. Hate and fear, greed and selfishness? War is a symptom, not the cause. I almost lost my war against climate change and Demo-n-Capitalism because they are so unutterably depressing and overwhelming. I learned, though, that to survive them, we must go back to what connects us.


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