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March 6, 2020: Grounding

These days, the main reason why I have Icelandic horses, as well as goats, chickens, and a dog, is that they enable me to keep my metaphorical feet firmly on the ground. Today was proof positive of this. I mean, I might have just a hamster or a turtle, never a ferret – it takes an animal village.

I spend the morning on the computer, on a day in which the sun was shining, working on Bright Lights Book Distribution stuff. It was Friday, not a good day to call places, most, I think, were outside. Had to leave a lot of messages. But the big news is that we might, come this summer, be sending books to Kaktovik, a village in which the


school recently burned down. It’s going to be quite the project, getting the right books ready to be shipped out, determining what they need, and making sure they reach their final destination. I talked with the VCRS Director Steve Brown who immediately said to me that he and I will go there. That was a very nice gesture on his part.

I can’t do it all, so I am putting this project in his hands. If it had been, as it is now, an advertised position I would not have applied for it because I would have presumed that, as such, it exceeds my organizational capacity.

This is going to be a win-win for Kaktovik and the VCRS Recycling Center. The latter stands to get considerable publicity if this venture is a success. And we may learn some about how sending books to villages actually works.

I, who was overwhelmed by the preliminary hoopla involved in this, decided to spend the afternoon with my animals. I brushed them out. Then Pete and I first took Tinni and Tyra for a walk around the loop, then took Hrimmi and Raudi out. The horses were glad to be out and clearly were enjoying themselves. I would have ridden; the wind had died down, but instead I chose to walk in order to clear my head. And the walk did just that. It was so fun, communicating with the horses and having them respond in kind. They seemed to be so ready for spring.

The sun became a visible, opaque ball as the sky became more overcast.

I next got the goats out and cleaned their pen. I had not done this prior to my trip. I like doing this chore, every bit of it, and after I get a sense of satisfaction in realizing they’re in clean environs. The same is true when it comes to chicken care.

And yes, there is the dog. Pete took her skiing. A short bit ago she let me know that she was hungry and needed to go out.

Being with the animals and tending to them gets me to look outward. I need them because they need me. It’s a nice balance – I do the mental stuff indoors and the physical stuff outdoors. Not everyone has this. Lucky me.

Next: 66. 3/7/20: The Bright Lights Book Project of Palmer, Alaska

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