"I was, in fact, homesick for wildness, and when I found it I knew how intimately - how resonantly - I belonged there. We are charged with this - all of us. For the human spirit has a primal allegiance to wildness, to really live, to snatch the fruit and suck it, to spill the juice." - Jay Griffiths, Wild: an Elemental Journey

Friday, September 21, 2012


Day two of my journey saw me leaving State College and the beautiful, inspiring, comforting Liz behind.  It was a great day for a drive.  I listened to the first six chapters of Anne of Green Gables.  (I had decided to download it before leaving and read it for about the 7th time because she reminds me of myself, and helps me embrace my talkative, imaginative, slightly-ridiculous nature.)  I also talked to another inspiring friend, Shelley, for over two hours.

Upon arriving in Toledo, I went straight to Scott and Krissy's house.  I met them on last year's road trip west because I couch surfed with them (http://www.couchsurfing.org/).  We hit it off and have kept loosely in touch over the past year.  Last year, we talked about intentional communities and traveling, and I played with their brilliant 2-year-old boy, Emerson.  In the past year, they had Sylvia, whom I couldn't wait to meet.

Scott, Emerson, & Sylvia

Mama Krissy joins the picture (and my flash gets weird)

We had a cookout with a couple of their friends on my first night in town.  We caught up, they asked me about my plans, and I explained that I had none after Toledo.  They quickly convinced me to stay through the weekend, so I could attend the nighttime bike ride to a bar into the city for a friend's birthday on Friday night.  Well, ok.  If you insist.

Since Scott and Krissy are currently living with Krissy's parents (seems to be a trend these days), they didn't have room to host me.  They had arranged for me to stay with Mike, a couch surfing friend of theirs.  After the cookout, I drove to Mike's place, set up my bed, and crashed.

The next day, Mike was at work all day, and Scott & Krissy were both busy.  I let myself sleep for over 10 hours, which helped to finally kick the head cold I'd been carrying around.  (Yay for breathing!)  Then I had a greasy, delicious breakfast at the diner on the corner that reminded me strikingly of the one in Twin Peaks.  ("Delicious pie.  Hot coffee.  Friendly service.")

Schmuckers Diner

I spent the rest of the day re-packing my car and getting rid of an entire box of stuff (most of which Scott & Krissy took off my hands).  I also walked to the Botanical Gardens,

This dahlia is about the size of my face.

and *accidentally* ended up back at the greasy diner for a slice of homemade cherry crumb pie a la mode.

I ate every crumb.

When Mike got home from work, I helped him harvest some kale, chard, peppers, tomatoes, and okra from his AMAZING garden.

Mike in the garden. (That's a huge tobacco plant behind him to the right.)

Mike, Scott, Krissy, and most of their friends are really into the homesteading/edible landscaping/local eating movement.  I became a produce messenger between them.  When heading to Mike's on the first night, Scott said, "Oh wait - I want to send some stuff with you for Mike."  He gave me two pumpkins and a bag of peppers so hot that you can't touch them without gloves.  When I left Mike's the next day, he said, "Oh wait - take this bag of stuff from my garden to Scott for me."  Vegetables act as the currency of friendship.  Love it.

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