Welcome All! I'm a dreamer, I hope you are too! A Posse ad Esse, or From possibility to reality, is a general state of mind. I hope you'll share your possibilities with me as I will with you. Namaste~

June 12, 2008

I worry sometimes

I know, we all do right? Poor me. Maybe I shouldn’t even say “worry”, it’s not the right word, it’s more like I’m “concerned”. The thing is that I’m concerned about things that are, largely it seems, out of my control. Peak oil, food shortages, economic downturns and climate change (to a certain degree) are the biggies. I believe that all of these things are coming or are here (depending on your circumstances) and I “concern myself” with what it is that I as a father/we as a family should do to mitigate the impact that we feel from said changes. Do we go ahead with business as usual? Do we hunker and live spartan ascetic lives? Staying here in Northern UT has its merits; it’s a good place to live, good employment rate, we’re in a comfortable home and we like it here. On the other hand we’ve thought a lot, both in the past and from time to time even now, about relocating to a more rural location. West Virginia perhaps, that’s where A~’s family is located, the land is cheap, there’s little regulation on what you can do on your own land and the ground is fertile beyond description. Of course both possible courses have their cons as well. UT, for all its financial opportunities is a vastly spread out mass of suburbia with large homes, holding large families driving large vehicles. What does this mean to me? Well in a peak oil situation it means that there’s going to be a lot more pressure on the resources that we do have available, gas, fuel, electricity, coal and oil and that means higher costs of living. Already you can almost steal SUV’s from some of the dealerships in the area because there is so little demand and people are starting to talk about which bills they can afford to pay this month. On the other hand, Many of the rural places of the country are among the hardest hit already by the rising fuel prices, and will no doubt be some of the first parts of the country to be taken out of the delivery loop should true shortages begin to appear due to their low population numbers and low income levels per capita. It would not be unthinkable for some of these smaller communities to be less than welcoming to new residents at a time of crisis. In the words of The CLASH, “Should I stay or should I go?” (In case you’re interested in a very informative read, Sharon posted a tremendously good entry about this very issue the other day.)

I’m not at the place yet where I feel pressured to make any major changes to my day to day routine, other than the things that we are already doing to improve our sustainability; use less power, eat less meat, produce more of our own food (fruits, vegetables, chickens, bread.) and bike more often to reduce fuel use. I honestly have to say though that it does run through my mind. I used to be the type of person that sat back and let life happen around me. I was very adept at finding ways to either deny that something was coming down the line or somehow deflect the effect of it from me. I found later in life, that all this does is delay the inevitable impact and it hurts much more on the second time around than just being prepared and doing your best to deal with it to begin with. So now having learned my lessons well, I look to the future as a father, a husband, a son and a brother and wonder what it holds and what I can do about it. At what point do I need to shift gears and either make a major shift in lifestyle, or at least prepare to do so in the near future? For that matter, how much of my concern is based on environment? What I mean is if “we are what we eat” are we then also “what we read” or “what we watch”. The more we learn about some of the things that may happen, the more that we are led to other things. I worry sometimes about being seen as “Jumping the shark”, especially when I talk about my concerns for the future. Do you? I know that a lot of the people that take the time from their busy days to read my blog know about these topics, but I assume that they like I have family and friends that may not, or may not even want to. How do you broach the topic? What are your plans for the future? Am I alone in my concern? I doubt it. One of my (probably yours too) favorite blogs to read is A Homesteading Neophyte. Phelan posted today about her stress and general “funkness” lately. I’ve had a lot of the same thing going on. It’s one of the reasons that I love my second life in the blogoshpere, I get to see that yeah, I feel a little funk in my life, but I’m not alone. I couldn’t have predicted that after the death of my uncle last week that I would have been affected so much, but I was. I think I had a much harder time coming to grips with it than I ever thought I would have, but I had a lot of friends from all over the world wishing me well and sending their regards. It helps. Anyway, I digress.

My point in all of this rambling is to a certain degree just to get it out of my head but even more than that it’s to let anyone else out there who’s having the same concerns know that they’re not alone. I guess that’s the point of community right. Share and learn from each other, support each other and just listen.

Thanks for listening. Hopefully I can get a little more ‘posse’ (possibility) going on and kick this funk.

Till then.



Phelan said...

I didn't think you were still reading my blog. It's been lonesome without your comments, hint hint nudge nudge. ;)

It sounds like you have many decisions ahead of you. Ones that you will need to way the pros and cons carefully. It is true that those of us "out of the loop" will be the first ones to go unserved. But we will be the ones that will not starve. Many suburbans can make it on what land they have, if they are careful, and you my friend can and will do great where you are. You are talking a great security measure already. Even if you haven't htought of it that way. By getting your neighbors involved...oops I am going to start rambling, better not.

We have some major hurdles to jump through right now. oh, have you thought about growing sunflowers in your yard for feed for your chickens? sorry side thought, it does have some relivance with the whole price/gas/stuff topic. And we are going to find ourselves slidding deeper into that worry/concern well. But just remember to put a caged canary down first, to make sure you can get back up alive. Aren't those some reassuring thoughts. Ok, I am off te be onery elswhere.

ruralaspirations said...

I feel like change is definitely coming, but I don't feel too down about it. It's partly my eternal optimism, but also partly selfishness: Our family is in a very good position to weather out such a storm.

And part of me also feels like we had this coming, and that people are going to need a rude awakening to change the way we all live. Unfortunately, it takes economic hardship for people to take things seriously. I think, in the long run, our society will be a lot better off when we re-learn the lost skills of providing for ourselves, and rediscover the value of frugality.

hedgeshappenings said...


We just had 100 people over yesterday to celebrate my daughter's hs graduation. It was really interesting to see them wander around our place. Some just think we are country hicks, some saw the wisdom is being able to provide for you family from your own place, most just wondered about the amount of work involved.

People are definitely more talkative about changes in the world. Some of our guests had traveled 1000 miles to be. Gas prices were definitely on their minds!

Rambling . . . I know, sorry. I'm still half brain dead from preparing.

Robbyn said...

Our choice is to move to the country, but we will be in driving distance of small towns and even a big metropolis if we can move where we're currently thinking. We'll be limiting ourselves but also preserving our ability to feed and care for ourselves, which seems to us to be primary importance just now. We're also going to try to set up things so that others can join us occasionally or even longer term if they want or need to. We still believe in community. But we need to eat and preserve our family within that community, even if it puts community at a bit farther distance for us.

On another note, Phelan tagged me for a meme with the topic of what we'd be willing to do without, and I'm passing it along to you, if you've not done that subject yet. I'd be very interested to see what you'd say...