Through the woods I'm goin',
Through the bogs and mire,
Straightway down the road,
To my heart's desire
If I was where I would be,
Then I would be where I am not,
Here I am where I must be
Go where I would, I cannot.
Today in Florida, i was greeted by circling birds of prey, butterflies, belladonna, lizards, young girls named Aurora and Evangeline playing with flowers in a culdesac, warm lemons sweet in the sun, dragonflies, and a giant pine cone from some phantom great pine tree. The journey has been at times beautiful and illuminating and at times, very hard and trying work. Most of my sleep has come in the back seat of the car, while my soul-mirror sweet sunny sister friend Goldie takes the wheel.
Goldie and Dandelion, on tour for beauty and truth.
I have heard stories from residents of towns along the way. How they're coping with the struggle of being alive in the world today. There is so much hardship, so much disease, poverty, and pain. People are trying to make good lives for themselves, but the resources are so scarce. I go into all these roadside markets- these places along the road which should be unique centers of trade, waiting in welcome for sojourners. Instead, we find the same damn thing over and over. A vast display of non-food substances in brightly colored packages, newspapers and magazines with mind-boggling heaadlines designed to distract people from eachother and the natural world, tobacco and caffeinated mutant beverages decorating this bizarre, fake plastic, fluorescent-lit would-be oasis.
At least the humans there are individuals. Dee in Florida told us about http://survivalist.info/ which is an awesome resource for us all right now. Joe in Georgia told us about how ridiculous it is, that in his neighborhood there are all these empty homes, and the garbage pickup service leases garbage cans to each one, yet there are families living two to one house, sharing also the garbage can and not allowed to use the unused. Sounds like a common situation, no? How many homes are empty? How many people need homes? What is going on here?
Sherl, Ashley, and Ashanti, in South Carolina, I think, (we were a little road-weary and not sure if we'd crossed a border yet) told me where I could go for a salad bar, informed me of all the grocery options (IGA, Publix, Walmart) and treated me so kind. Ashley, probably in her late teens or early twenties, had bright eyes, and a beautiful smile. Ashanti, probably about four years old, gave me the sweetest hug. Sherl was kind to take her time explaining to Goldie and I where we might find some real food. We decided not to stop, though, as our journey was a winding one.
It was Wednesday when I left Baltimore. The night before, I rode a borrowed bike down to McKeldin Park, where Occupy Baltimore makes its home. I got to participate in the discussion between small groups about how to spend the time of GA's. I think this is probably a common thing amongst growing occupations. How long should we spend talking about camp-specific issues (like quiet time, tent-sharing rules, how to deal with people who disturb the peace there, etc) and how much time to devote to political action and ideas. The night I was there, we discussed a few ideas that seemed promising, including having a weekly schedule of changing focus topics, and designating one weekend day and one week day for large-scale meetings in hopes of gathering greater attendance from the general public who cannot devote as much time to being in the square.
I just learned that police refused to allow local band, Celebration, to perform at the Occupy space. Ridiculous. I don't know what the specific issues are, here is a facebook thread about it: http://www.facebook.com/#!/permalink.php?story_fbid=163063733789607&id=144588345637146
Here is an electric tarot card:
I arrived around 9pm to gather Goldie and her things for the drive south. She was heading to Florida, where she was raised, to audition for a film on Saturday, which is today, and I am currently sitting in her family's home, typing this to you while she is finishing up the audition. We met on Sunday, the 6th, after the Tar Sands action to stop the Keystone XL Pipeline, which you may have heard about... The action reached the objective and Obama has halted the project, "indefinitely" and I hope that's the truth, but we will continue to protect the planet from such atrocities, no matter when they're threatened again.
The next thing to really stand up for, that I know about as a resident of the East Coast, is November 21 in Trenton, NJ. Its very important. You should probably go, and/or, call/write to the governors of NY and Delaware, and Obama's rep and tell them off about fracking. http://savethedelawareriver.com
This is no joke. Our natural resources are under attack, and WE MUST vocalize our non-consent. The rivers don't speak a language the politicians hear, but you do. You have power. Use it!
The night in DC before we set off south was pretty instense. I won't bother with the myriad details, I'll save them in case anyone ever wants to write a screenplay about this wild wild ride. Suffice to say, we didn't leave DC limits until nearly 6am. We'd hoped to stop at the Richmond Occupy, but our directions were faulty from our exhaustion, and we didn't realize until we'd already passed by. The brave Occupiers there, though, had decided to ReOccupy Richmond that very night, after their first camp was bulldozed by the Commonwealth. From what Ben in Baltimore told me, the laws are different in Virginia because it is a commonwealth rather than a state, and the government functions differently there. Huh! Wierd! Whodathunkit? Anyway, I guess the authorities have been pretty harsh. I would have loved to come and meet the courageous ReOccupiers, and I hope to in the near future.
Goldie and I brought a box of the Occupied Washington Times, distributed by the encampment on K street in DC. We left them at rest stops and gas stations, in waiting areas, in newspaper boxes, diaper-changing tables in womens' restrooms, and in lots of peoples' hands. If I'd prepared more for this, I'd have printed some pamphelets myself with some more direction for online resources. People are hungry for information. A lot of people haven't yet heard about what we're doing. They will, though, and I hope when they do that they're getting an accurate idea of what we're all about.
Relying on a lot of kind strangers, we got the engine checked (theres a lot of corrosion in mine which leads to a very noisy ride) we got to sleep in a safety-patrolled parking lot rather than a seedy motel, and found places to purchase food and natural remedies. We meandered beneath tall pines at rest areas, and examined the varieties in small islands of plant life between asphalt and concrete corridors. We collected roses and marigolds and geraniums, pinecones and spanish moss, little living mementos of our journey.
To fuel our bodies, we've been consuming mostly nuts, fruits, bee pollen and propolis in raw honey, and coconut butter, along with some supplements and a lot of water. So far, so good. It feels like we've struck a natural rhythm together.
Goldie and I are an interesting match. Dandelion and Goldie, Golden girls, soul-mirror sisters. The coincidences are uncanny, but I won't draw them out too far right now. We're both 28-yr-old aquarians with long blonde hair and an unrelenting feeling of responsibility to the planet. We are true mirrors to eachother, and are constantly learning from our shared experiences, able to collect new information about how to integrate aspects of the other into our own personalities. She is much more organized and practical, so well-informed and formulaic about implementing action. I am so very intuitive and abstract, motivated by my sense of beauty and adventure. Our bottom lines are the same, though, and we both mean business about this task ahead of building a new world.
As a movement, we really are shaping the world to come. The existing power structure is failing before our eyes, and I believe our movement is here to provide a true safety net for when the inevitable collapse leaves people stranded in unfamiliar territory, with no money and none of the supposed security of the previous paradigm. What we are now building is a different type of infrastructure, powered by people and the natural world, a true world community. We are connected via this information age already. Now, we will connect also in person and on the ground. There is so much power for change accessible to us all right now.
Now is the time to clean up your life. We are working on healing here. We must all heal from the inside out and the outside in. Cleaning up our minds, bodies, homes, yards, neighborhoods, towns, counties, states, regions, countries, and earth are all part of the same task. This is the true occupation. It is time to heal. We can do it together.
On the road I get so hungry for information! It is like water, and I find myself so glad when I get to spend some time on the internet. My updates may be sparse as I travel, but I will try to give my best when I can. There is so much more to this story! There will continue to be more! Shout out to the sweet hearts of OccupyJax (Jacksonville FL) who welcomed us into their standing occupation the other night. No camping! The occupiers take shifts! Everyone is so awesome. Everything is going to be alright.
Hopefully, we're heading towards New Orleans very soon, though the road seems to direct our course somewhat. We both have work we know we have to do now, and its a beautiful thing. Maybe I'll see you in Trenton on the 21st to save the Delaware River from poisoning, or on the 22nd in DC to welcome the sojourners walking from NYC through Philly and Baltimore to our nations capital. I hope we have a huge party on the whitehouse lawn. It is our own yard, after all. Or maybe I'll see you in your own hometown!
Much love to all! Be good!