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August 12, 2022: Home Sweet Home

I have been spending a lot of time in town this past year. I vaguely recall spending a lot of time at home. Absence makes the heart go wander. I had a long day, got the books ready for Friday Fling, then all afternoon worked the crowd, relentlessly, passing out books to kids in high end strollers and giving their parents bookmarks.

Approaching people on the fly isn’t something that I enjoy doing. In fact, each time I step out from the behind the book-filled table, I force myself to take a deep breath (through the nose) then exhale (through the nose). Then I get out there and talk the talk.

Jim's Subaru

At first the parents regard me with suspicion. After they realize I’m not going to hurt them, I give them my pitch. They soften further as they realize that I’m not soliciting or asking for anything. The kid gets the book – they are then happy.

This is a scene that repeats itself over and over and over again, ad infinitum. Today was the final Friday Fling – the Alaska State Fair begins on Monday.

This, and the thoughts that accompany it, was tiring. We did close up shop a bit earlier than usual because Milena had to get home. I went and distributed books in three locations then made a beeline for home.

The minute I stepped out of the Subaru I began to relax. It is a rare thing, to live in a place where one isn’t surrounded, in some cases literally, wall to wall, by people. I see the buildings – some people (and most rent) have other apartments on the sides, and on the top and bottom. In fact, my grandmother on my mother’s side lived in such a building, and the building was located at the corner of a very busy intersection. Being a kid, I didn’t mind hearing the steady stream of traffic; although now I’d go out of my mind if I had to live in such a place.

No, here we have neighbors who are seldom around. There is also very little traffic. And we don’t hear the steady stream of traffic on the Glenn Highway, which is approximately five miles away.

I know that it will not always be the way it is here. In fact, the Bible camp denizens are punching in a driveway as I write this. This seems to be what people most like to do. I want to say to them, what would Jesus Do? but have refrained because all I’d get would be a blank look.

Down the way, the bumper crop was removed – now a large yellow school bus is situated where the cars used to be. There are numerous RVs and two People Movers, scattered like dice around the hood.

Power comes in and it will be all over. I’ll be out of here in a single heartbeat. Have to have options. Otherwise, life is not worth living.

Next: 220. 8/13/22: Co-op for a Cause

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