Thursday, May 13, 2010

I Just Dont Understand People

First of all, let me start by saying that this is not one of those whiney blogs that is dripping with want for pity.  I dont want pity, I just want to vent about people and how I do not understand what the FUCK goes on in their heads sometimes.

First, a lil backstory.  Before I went to college, I was very involved in 4-H.  I leased and showed mini horses until the day that I finally got my own.  I couldn't afford to show or own a saddle horse, and the minis were enough fun as it was.  So I finally got my own Mini.  He was this fat little black horse who had more personality than your average person.  I instantly fell in love with the little guy and named him My Little Wizard.

This is him all prettied up before a show.

I showed him for three years and got him in shape and forged a close relationship. Anyone who is a horselover understands that the bond between a person and their first horse is an amazing thing.  Wizard was a best friend, and was there for me through some tough times.  I loved that little guy.

When college rolled around, I had to leave which meant that nobody could make it out to the barn to take care of Wizard as much as he needed.  So we found a 4-H family that leased him for a year.  He loves kids, so it was great to see him with a family with two little girls and a young boy to play with.  He was genuinely happy with them, so when it came time for his lease to expire we asked if they would be interested in buying the little guy.  They bought him about six months ago, and I was sad to see him go, but I was also happy that he was with a family that loved him and that could give him the attention he deserved.

Well I am back home for the summer and I decided to drop in a meeting of my old 4-H club because I want to be an advisor.  The lady who bought Wizard seemingly tried to slip out after the meeting but i cornered her and asked her how Wizard was doing.  It turns out that he got caught up in his stall and died almost a month ago.  I could tell that she was still shaken over it, but it did not make me any less angry.  Why the fuck did I not get a phone call to tell me that my best friend was dead?  I know that he wasnt technically my horse anymore, but i think that I deserve at least that much respect.  I dont blame them for what happened, it was a freak accident.  But I do think that is was selfish and asinine to not tell me that my horse was dead.  Had the tables been turned and I was the one with a dead horse, yes, i would have been crushed.  However, I would have the decency to tell them in a timely manner.  I dont even think they were going to tell me, but I had managed to corner the woman after the meeting.  That is just so infuriating.

Am I overreacting? I dont think so, but maybe you have different opinions. Feel free to tell me what you think about this.

Anywho... here is to Wizard.  My best friend and first horse.  I still love him and I hope that he is just as amazing a soul in his next incarnation.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Herbcrafting Kick

Next piece of pagan art. This is a goddess-themed pentacle.  It was kinda just something fun and colorful. 

Maybe it is just the surge of life that comes with springtime, but i have been on an herbal kick of late.  I have flowerpots all over the front porch and the deck with various things planted in them, and I want more.  My dad is starting to get annoyed with all the sprouting foliage around the house, but he is just going to have to deal.

So far, I have parsley, oregano, and chive sprouted and growing strong.  I also have spearmint and lemongrass planted and it should be sprouting any day now.  I also want more.  I have been applying for jobs in the area and as soon as I have some income, I plan on getting some more seeds to plant and grow them over the summer and then take them to college so that I can harvest herbs all year long.  It is a rather exciting prospect as my friends have a house and I can leave my plants that don't fit in my dorm room there and we can use them in our cooking.  I can also harvest and dry some for use in whatever i need them for.

I have also been thoroughly interested in wildcrafting.  As I wrote about in my last blog, my family and I went camping last weekend and my mom and I spent quite a bit of time exploring the hills and finding plants.  We are going again this weekend and I am quite excited to explore some more and maybe bring some things home.  I also invested a gift card in a plant identification book.  Tom Brown's Guide to Wild Edible and medicinal Plants.  I dont know how good it is, but we shall see when it arrives in the next two or three days. 

I want to work on my plant knowledge because, frankly, it sucks.  I could identifiy some of the obvious ones, but for the most part I am terrible with plant identification.  If any of my 5 readers knows of good books feel free to recommend them to me. I dont really have anyone who can teach me and I really want to learn.

That is all for this blog.  Hopefully I will be able to post some more blogs in the near future as I am jobless thus far this summer.

Blessed Be

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Primitive camping and a connection with nature

So my family and I went camping this weekend for mother's day on our family's property in southern Ohio.  It is a 60-acre patch of land that we go down to camp on and refer to as Harrison.  We plan on moving down there but the cabin is yet to be built due to lack of funding. So we are content to camp in tents and our camper that we have permanently set up down there.  This was a short camping trip as we left Friday afternoon and came back Saturday night, but it has been over a year since i have been there so any time there is amazing for me.

Harrison is old coal land in the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains.  It used to be heavily forested and chock full of wildlife until some idiot discovered coal.  So then, it was strip-mined to fulfill the greed of man.  Once everything of any value in the area was stolen, it was parceled off and sold dirt cheap.  Now, it is all either privately owned or part of state parks.  The trees are coming back and new lakes and ponds dot the landscape.  There are young forests forming all over and there are even a few gigantic trees that escaped the strip mining that now stand as great lords of the forest.  This is one of my favorite parts about the property.  It is proof that even through some of the worst of human's greed, nature can still bounce back strong.

We spent friday night etting up our camp and I just reacquainted myself with the area.  We sat around the fire until about midnight when the storms started to blow in, then spread the fire and moved into the camper. I stood outside until the rain became to heavy and then i moved to my bed inside. I fell asleep to the lullaby of rain lashing the camper and thunder shaking the earth around me.  It was quite an amazing experience that I have not had the pleasure of in quite some time.  The morning dawned wet and cold and we cooked a delicious breakfast of hobo pies on the camp fire.  Dad and my brother were all about the fishing so mom and I tagged along and explored the lake while they fished. I found a hole patch of wild onions and so i rooted out some onions and explored the old beaver dam while my dad and brother competed for fish.  We then moved to another lake and of course, dad and jake fished while mom and I took the dogs and explored the surrounding area.  It was a great experience.  Mom and visited and old great oak tree that I cant even stretch my arms half way around.  We discovered a ton of different plants and herbs and flowers and got quite a workout scaling the slope.  I felt so connected with nature, it was amazing.

Unfortunately, we had to come home to suburbia, so here I am blogging.  I think that spending time in wilder places is great for modern man.  I love these modern conveniences, but I've never felt at home in suburbia.  This closed-packed urban hell is just not for me.  I find myself closer to the gods and closer to myself when I am wandering the hills, discovering the treasures of nature.

Ain't that just the most redneck setup that you ever did see?
our quite cozy home away from
Me.  Exploring with the dogs.
Dad's big catch
My brother's big catch
My big find :)  A wild onion.  I was told that I'm not allowed to smile

 This is our lake, and the one around which we hiked and explored to find all of those flowers and plants above.  it was formed by a beaver who dammed up a stream.  Unfortunately, due to the greed and sheer blood lust of man, the dam was destroyed and the beaver killed, just because.  That is the story for another blog.
Here is The Lord of the Wood.  A gigantic oak tree that is so big around, i cannot even get my arms half-way around.  Standing next to this tree is an experience.  It is so old and wise, and full of energy.
My dog Chance enjoying the lake
My other dog, Jenna
The other lord of the wood, a massive beech tree that was struck by lightning and yet still holds his reign over the other trees in the area.
All of us were worn out.  Even the dogs