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April 11, 2012: When Dark Clouds Hover

Last night I tossed and turned for some time. The image of what I perceived to be an oncoming storm came to mind. There, in front of me was a dark cloud. I realized that I could do one of two things, the first being run from the storm, and the second being simply to vanquish it.

I decided to vanquish it, and with good reason. This project has gotten a great deal of support from the local community. And it will only continue to get more support. Most everyone says yes when I ask for something. And the books are ending up in the hands of appreciative readers. It has for the most part also been self-affirming for me. I have reached out to people and gotten a warm reception. I am not, nor will I ever be in the Palmer Inner Circle. And I don’t want to be there.

Yabba dabba do

It’s fun to be on the fringes, socializing with community members because I want to, not because I have to.

The question that remained was, how do I vanquish this cloud? Bill S stopped by the VCRS sorting area yesterday and when I told him that I’d been told that I couldn’t remove books from the bookstore, he simply said that it (the attitude) has always been this way, and it isn’t going to change.”

Okay. I came up with a plan at 4:00 a.m., one that I know is going to work. I’m the self-appointed outreach coordinator. I’m going to continue to do what I’ve been doing so well, which is to salvage, sort, categorize, clean, and distribute books. And at the same time, I’ll continue my outreach efforts. There are a handful of community projects underway locally – I just need to keep those working on them in a motivated fashion.

Last January (which according to a neighbor was 106 days previously), I decided to give this project my all for 365 days. This was a tough call because I suspected that giving it my all meant that I would have to forego valuable writing time. And yes, I’ve done this. Now, slowly but surely, other writing options are materializing. At 6:00 a.m., I partially vanquished the cloud cover by working on a newsletter that is being put together by Pete’s technical writing students. The students are also putting together a letterhead, brochure, and thank you cards. My portion of the newsletter project was ridiculously easy figure out. It will, when complete, contain a narrative about a child choosing a book, a book review, and a listing of volunteers, supporters and book recipients. The students will write an intro explaining what the book project is all about.

By 4:00 p.m. today, the cloud cover had lifted completely. All day, on and off, I exchanged emails with an individual who connected me with the temporary homeless shelter in Anchorage. We are now working on yet another plan – I will talk with the homeless about what they are reading and submit it to Anchorage Press.

Not easier said than done. I feel confident about my ability to do this. And my level of confidence is being exacerbated by the fact that the cloud is lifting. I now actually am feeling my energy level going back up.

Full speed ahead and yabba dabba do.

Next: 101. 4/12/21: A Conversation with Hrimmi

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