Friday, 30 May 2008
Danny has always longed for a pair of shoes that would last half a lifetime, with mending, so he took the cash from selling his car to Cobblers at 73 North St, Lewes and bought himself a strong pair of working leather shoes.
This is what the transition looks like, step by step.
Saturday, 24 May 2008
This transition period is not going to be straightforward as the solutions are divergent: there are those who will want to keep the economic growth show on the road, using coal to liquid, GM and other high-carbon, earth unfriendly technologies. That, and a run on nuclear, could be suicidal. The environmentalists will strengthen the call for low-impact earth-repair solutions and clashes will certainly ensue as the two paradigms go head to head. I’m reminded of the transition phase of labour; that’s when you tend to say, fuck off, I don’t want to do this any more. But it’s also the time just before you start to actually give birth to the gorgeous new, long-awaited baby.
Meanwhile, a good part of the economic ‘crunch’ (a lovely polite sounding word, that) is underpinned by the markets’ realisation that the party’s over. That’s reflected in the fact that the oil future prices are now higher than before. The price of oil, as Norman Baker said this week on Radio 4, is not going to come down again.
Having seen all this ahead a while back, I’m now pretty familiar with the range of possible futures, and look forward to the time when we’re all on the road to creating the better future with less fossil fuels. Transition Town Lewes is designed to help people through this – the faster we get on board, the gentler the transition. As the management guru Peter Drucker famously said, The best way to predict the future is to create it.
Friday, 16 May 2008
Friday, 9 May 2008
But it’s working with nature where I’ve had the greatest learning. Last night I harvested a salad of perennials and self-seeding annuals. The rocket, fennel, chives, young kale, red orach, sweet cicely and various flower petals are rich in minerals, taste, life zest and ease of growing. Those and a dozen others yield the family salads for nine months of the year. They are also resilient to slug and snail attack. Compared to these permaculture plants, the lettuce seedlings are simply rich pickings for the armies of pests roaming my small patch, and will probably not even make it out of the ground. Far from being a doomy reaction to what’s ahead, resilience building is creative, life affirming, and downright common sense.
Monday, 5 May 2008
Our three teenage daughters and Dirk and I are having a rare good chat. Was it good that LSD was invented? Why? How do you know that being ‘inner-directed’ is better than being ‘outer-directed’; isn’t that just the theory of an inner-directed person? Is it true that we have been living in a dark age according to the Indian long calendar?
How long was man a hunter gatherer before he discovered agriculture 10,000 years ago? Why is Ishmael the best book you’ve ever read? Our 14 year old leaves the room as she absolutely is allergic to any mention of anything connected to climate change so we’ve agreed we won’t talk about it in her presence, but it’s her fault as she walked in on this conversation. What links the Mayan calendar with the year 2012 and what does it mean? (A friend of ours thinks humanity will go through a paradigm shift in 2012.) What is Maharishi and TM? If things are changing and consumption growing at a faster and faster rate, is that rate of development going to peak and decline or is it going to just keep going?
Why is Boris Johnson so unpopular with Guardian writers? Are the Conservatives all right wing? Does your love for Dad ebb and flow?If something is in square brackets in the paper what does that mean? What does ombudsman mean? Where does the word come from? (I said that a lot of Norwegian words ended in man and Dirk and Sophia laughed at me, which pissed me off, till I got the joke.) What is a junta? How many natives are left in the world? If it’s 3% could it really be that as many as 210 million non-agricultural people are still alive on this earth?
So if civilisation collapsed, original mankind could just carry on as if the agricultural revolution had been a very long bad dream?