An Act of Conservation

032It’s true that we seem to have many conveniences at our camp. Certainly, not traditional “camping” .  There are still many lessons in conservation that we learn. Many things, that being hooked to ordinary power and city water, would not teach us.

Our electricity comes from a gas-powered generator. The price of gas certainly keeps us vigilant in multitasking when we start the generator. Just yesterday, Ed and I set up Katherine’s swimming pool. We have a shallow well which is overflowing , right now, but may be reduced to a trickle in the near future. Filling the pool was an exercise in “using before losing”.  Also, I needed to vacuum my camper. I didn’t just start the generator for one task. When Ed ran the pool filter, I vacuumed and charged my Kindle too. We also charge large batteries and, by using a power inverter, are able to run the generator much less often.

We keep our food and beverages in ice chests. As the sun crosses the site, we move the coolers to the shady spots and we don’t linger over an open lid, either. That kind of browsing in front of an open refrigerator (by kids) drives us nuts at home. Conservation of energy and supplies becomes a lifestyle to those who learn from remote living. Power,water, propane gas and refrigeration are all resources that come from exhaustible sources. Whenever possible, I heat water to boil on our campfire instead of running our propane stove. One thing we have plenty of, is wood. But wood takes time, effort and gasoline to harvest too.

Another thing that we are very conscientious about is warmth. On a warm day, we open our camper shades and windows to make good use of the sun’s offering but have a keen sense, when to close them, as the day turns cooler. Everything we do is an act of conservation, in one way or another. With practice, it is such an automatic purpose that we often decide to act in the same moment.

Ed asks: “Do you think we should close up the camper now?”

I answer: “I just did it.” 🙂

I think that there would be far less waste, in this country, if everyone spent a summer vacation under these conditions, at least once.

Worry Not our Children

A fellow blogger ( posted some interesting scientific facts in her blog.

The facts came from:

The one that rattled my thoughts most was the one in the image above.

Let’s say it is even half-true.

Is that a matter for humankind to handle?

Humankind has absolutely made an impact on our Earth. Myriads of people run shouting and waving and warning. The presumption is that humans will cause  Nature’s premature demise.

Conservation of our resources and mindfulness of our place on this Earth is, not at all, foolish.

Still, I keep feeling that we are way too arrogant about assuming what we can do and should do to prop-up ecosystems. Human influences, have not been the only destructive forces on the planet. Our existence is a pinprick in time compared to Earth’s existence.

Mother Nature has experience in birth, death,extinction, and renewal that I dare say, we could not possibly understand.

Predictions about the time needed for recovery from oil spills has been traditionally over estimated. In fact, there is much evidence to support the premise that our efforts at “clean-up” interfere with Nature’s recovery.

I want kids to learn to recycle.

I want kids not to litter.

I want kids to treat water as an exhaustible resource.

My problem is the message we send kids. The above poster is a shining example of the urgency and frightening way we, humans, have appointed ourselves guardians of the natural world. Even someone who could not read would understand that we are considered responsible for extinctions and caretakers of all living things.

Please think about the scariness of the messages  we give kids today. The burden of debt will all too likely be their inheritance. I’d like the kids to feel the world will turn and Nature will continue in spite of us not because of us.

Laws and Order

So here I am with writing time…

I recently noticed that my right foot must be larger than my left because I can’t slip it into my tied  sneaker OR my right sneaker just may be a factory “second” and is a fraction smaller than my left. Whatever…

I have learned to embrace the unevenness of the world. Many people have what I call “Perfect Order Syndrome”. You know who you are. I’ve watched you mow your lawn and plant your flowers. Red, yellow,blue…red,yellow, Yikes! Off you go to the nursery for blue. Have you guys noticed the “perfect” randomness of Nature? Many things must appear “out of place” to the syndrome sufferers. Wow! It’s like what I imagine a dog’s sense of smell is, an overpowering input of too much information!

As much as I poke fun at gardeners with plans, I am as bugged by a crooked wall hanging as the next guy. If only to relieve the “fun house” effect for my senses, I will straighten as I go. How each of us perceives the world on an individual basis is very intriguing to me. Guess this is why we put our interests in best friends. They are our closest fit and the proof  that our personal quirks are NOT crazy.

What IS crazy anyway? Out of the norm? I’ve yet to find two individuals exactly alike so how could we have a notion of a “norm”? The American Kennel Club is a perfect example of the hazards of searching for a norm. The breeding of dogs for special traits and norms has created “monsters” and weaklings in the canine world. The many breeds are human curiosity and a natural atrocity! Most purebred dogs would perish in the wild,as would most modern citified folk too.

Here we come to the human condition. The softening and weakening human beings who expect to be “cared for” by the government. Those who turn on a water faucet and have never considered where the water comes from and that it is a limited resource. Those who turn on a light switch never considering the energy, its source and how it is produced. I’m sure it’s easy to get, once,twice,three times removed from Nature in the city. But I consider it a dangerous trade-off for country “horse sense”. Now, I am not planning on an apocalypse in the near future. My warning is about losing ourselves in the city. Whether we were planted on earth by Aliens or come from Adam and Eve, we are part of this physical world and a rung in the “natural ladder”. Knowing how to “make do” using ingenuity and by conserving our resources has been replaced with, “I’ll just buy another one.”

I’m not one of those super “greenies” who believe THEY can influence and protect Mother Nature. I am a person who believes Mother Nature is the one who knows best. By communing with her we learn the “perfect disorder” of living.

Have you ever watched ants working together or realized the balance of ecosystems? Let me tell you, mankind may affect them but Mother Nature will correct them. Most creatures who have inhabited this earth are evolved or extinct. No exceptions. No welfare, no bail outs, no mercy for the weak. Natural law is the only law that really exists.

I am not uncaring about others in need. In fact, we are supposed to help each other, like those ants. The one thing that mankind needs to learn is help your own. Taking care of family,friends and neighbors,IS the right thing to do. Our own communities need us. To reach out beyond that cannot be useful to our survival and without survival, who cares how large your TV is? The impending collapse of our capitalist system does not worry me. It could have worked and would have worked if left to “natural selection”. I know how to conserve. I am willing to lose my remote control for the TV. I know many ways to put food on the table. Do you?