Day 16: Road Trip of the Imagination

Today, a detour from the road trip: neighborhood organizing meeting of the local chapter of the Community Emergency Response Teams (CERT).

What happens when the next disaster — wildfires, floods, earthquakes, or ??? — strikes our peaceful community here on the coast? And the services we depend on — phone, internet, power, government, police, fire, food stores, ambulances, etc. — are all down, roads are cut off, safety agencies are overwhelmed, the fires are coming, and all we have are each other?

So, following some established CERT procedures, a group of us came together for the first time, introduced ourselves, and started talking. It was a chaotic cacophony, with some people loudly insisting that we do things their way, others seeking to edify and entertain us with their long stories, and others seeking attention and reassurance with endless questions. Everybody talking at once; not much listening.

And there I was, the frustrated facilitator, trying to see that each person had a chance to speak and be heard — with limited success.

But somehow, amazingly, we actually started getting things organized, initiating a planning map for our neighborhood.

I’ve got lots to do now to follow up. But first, I’ve got three more days on this Road Trip of the Imagination — a little more time to wander and wonder and dream. There’ll be time later for everything else.

Day 13: Road Trip of the Imagination

Summer Solstice
Because of our peculiar circumstances this year, it’s the first time that Wendy and I have been together for Summer Solstice in many years. 

At first we wanted to go somewhere special on the coast to have a special meal and watch the sunset over the Pacific. But as we thought about it, we realized that there would be hundreds of people driving here from all over, lining up at the restaurants to do the same.

So we decided to do something really special: celebrate being together. We drank our ceremonial Kiddush wine out on the deck as we quietly witnessed the last rays of the sun on this longest of days.

Using outer light,
Return to the inner.
In this way you are safe.

Tao Te Ching: 52

Day 12: Road Trip of the Imagination

Trees in the forest generally, and redwoods in particular, provide aid to each other when threats occur, such as storms, insects, fires, animals. They can provide nutrients and even water to each other. They communicate through underground neural networks, as well as through smells and even sounds. The health of each tree depends on the health of the forest, so taking care of each other is important for everyone’s long-term survival. For those of us working to cultivate connections among communities, they have a lot to teach us.