Growing up, whenever it rained my mother would say, “thank the lord, for these showers of blessings.” 20 something years later, I still love the rain. I love the way the air stills and becomes cooled, with the mist enveloping all on the land. The rain soothes and awakens. It makes for muddy walks, crazy hair, and dewy skin. Yesterday I had a rainy adventure that led me out to the Jump Off Community Land Trust. The rain was beating down while I drove along the winding country roads. When I neared the land trust, I started to think, “Wow I am 100% lost.” There were no houses in sight for miles, tons of trees, and many “POSTED” and “NO TRESPASSING” signs. I was pretty sure I was either going to be attacked by a wild animal, or shot. Thankfully, neither happened.
After driving several miles down the not-so-beaten road, my mind reeled with pure happiness and excitement. The trees had parted and I entered the community. There were beautiful homes built using natural design and architecture, lush gardens happy to finally see spring, and solar panels galore. What a little paradise in the woods! I spent the afternoon meeting and getting to know Sanford McGee, a local artist and member of the Jump Off Community Land Trust. His house was beautiful – everything breathed intention, “everything has a story”. Passive solar heating, wood fire stove, outdoor artist studio, eclectic books and fun old photos, greenhouse, gardens, off the grid, – what a place! Self-sufficiency and creativity abounded. The house was built with locally timbered wood, and floored with locally quarried stone.
Sanford too was very inspiring. For him, the ideal day is when he doesn’t even open his truck’s door, but instead works on his art in the peace and serenity of his well-loved home. We chatted over cups of tea about local food, art, traveling, and the challenge of engaging the present. After hearing stories of his travels to the French Alps and Greece, rocking out backstage with the Grateful Dead, and starting his own eco-trekking company, I left feeling very inspired and grounded. There’s so much life to live (God willing), and so many possibilities for what we choose to do with that time. For now, I’ll continue to embrace the adventures life throws my way, rain or shine.