I miss Chet. Even a staring, expressionless punching bag is better than being utterly alone. Well, maybe not. At least I have my dog.
I spent the morning cutting and sanding one of the larch stumps that came out of the cabin footprint when I built it. It sat outside over the winter but has dried up nicely this spring, so it was ready to become something completely new. I’m not sure what it’s going to be yet. At the right moment it will look like something other than a stump, and then I will just follow its lead and take it where it wants to go. If only humans were so prescient.
I will go into town this afternoon. It is time for some human contact, some time on my laptop with free wi fi, and pick up some supplies. Maybe a drink at Charlie’s, then back home for an evening fire outdoors. It is still cool enough for a fire in the evening. I can play fetch with my dog, Kaiju, and tire him out that way.
I am starting to lose that antsy feeling that I should be somewhere or doing something other than what I am doing. I can’t remember when I last felt this way, at least besides holidays. Sometimes I find myself just sitting, letting my mind wander, and minutes later I have been sitting in one spot, contentedly fiddling with a stick, or a flower, or adding wood to the stove. This is one of the things that I am here for: for time to pass at its own pace, instead of wrestling it to slow down or speed up or whatever my whim of the moment demands.
Today is quiet. Too quiet. I wonder if I should head into town today. It is sunny but cool as spring days can be. I could check on the bees or work on the henhouse but I feel more like going to sit at a coffee shop and letting the idle chatter of other humans wash over me so that I feel like part of their tribe. It would be nice to have a neighbor. Someone close, but not too close. I could drive over and lean on the fence as we commiserate about the weather, what we will be planting, maybe even what we are reading. Chet doesn’t really have strong views on any of these things. Or at least he doesn’t verbalize them.
What to do. It’s only been five days without human contact. I don’t even like most people. Why do I miss them? A person can be lonely in a room full of people, or solitary but not lonely. I’m here because I was lonely surrounded by people. Maybe I will stick it out alone today. See how I feel tomorrow. I can always immerse myself in a book. Perhaps something whimsical and fun like Nietzsche or Tolstoy. Or make something out of one of the tree stumps we pulled out of the cabin footprint.
I wonder when I’m going to start talking to myself. Oh wait, I’ve always talked to myself. Ok, I guess when am I going to start answering? Nope, that ship has sailed as well. When will I start talking to a volleyball? Maybe that’s the line. We’ll see.
It’s going to be hard when it’s winter and I really feel isolated, not just by geography and social withdrawal, but by the sheer difficulty of getting to people if I want to. If I need to. I suppose it’s good that I started this in the spring. Winter is still a long way away. It will be wise to plan for that, I suppose. Snowmobile maybe? I hate those things, but as practical necessity I might be able to justify it. Snowshoes, I suppose. And skis. Could I skate down the river once it freezes? I don’t think it will freeze, though. It doesn’t get quite that cold here.
What to do today. I think I’ll hike up the mountainside and gather some herbs and berries. There are alot of bears around, I should bring bells and bearspray. That’s the problem with gathering berries. I might as well be Yogi Bear raiding the beehive. Oh well. Herbs then. But first, I will make coffee and enjoy it on the porch.
Well, here I am. My dream is finally a reality. I have a cozy, warm home surrounded by my possessions that bring me the most joy. I am miles from any other human. Just me and my dog. I can do whatever I want all day long.
I woke up this morning to the sun shining in the window onto my face. I lay there for awhile listening to the silence. And by silence, I mean rustling leaves, birdsong and the sound of wood crackling in my wood stove.
It was a little strange not to see another human face all day, but not that strange. Even when a person is surrounded by people sometimes you go a day or two without seeing anyone.
It is social media I will be most glad to leave behind. It is a little weird to get used to. I have no internet, no data on my cell phone, and no wi fi. So my usual habit of checking Facebook and Instagram throughout the day will have to give way to other habits. Crunches and planks maybe. There wasn’t much on there that made my day better, anyway. It actually made me feel more isolated in a lot of ways. More isolated than I feel now. Isn’t that strange? Maybe it will change. We will see.