"May the long time sun shine upon you,all love suround you and the pure light within you,guide your way on"~Incredible String Band
Follow along with our adventures as we set out to convert a school bus into a beautiful,energy efficient home that runs off recycled vegetable oil. We then embark on a life long adventure, roaming the country, selling our handcrafted art and music as we go, meeting strange and wonderful people along the way. Crazy,naive,you ask ? Maybe,..maybe not..
~ Our Story ~
Sunday, February 15, 2004
After living year round, in a tipi in Oregon for 5 years and a yurt for three, on over 1000 acres, my husband Moss and I decided to move to the L.A area and become "real" people. After a few years of the daily grind, going to school and working a regular job, we decided, once and for all that life style just was not for us. We wanted to travel the country and spend our days being creative and enjoying life.
So, we quit our jobs, bought an old school bus and began to create our rolling home, fueled by waste veggie oil and electrified by the sun. This blog details our adventures and serves as a way to keep in touch with family and friends ( plus, maybe you will visit our other websites and buy our artwork and music OR click on our google adds! nudge, wink).
The following are profiles of myself and Moss along with our four birds and one dog that travel with us on the bus...
Religion: I do not believe there is one corect spiritual path that is right for all. I believe that God is everywhere, everything,part and parcel of the very atoms and molocules of matter. God is beyond the limitations of our minds. God is both male and female and neither. God is Krishna, Jesus, Budahah.
I experience God/dess most directly through nature, animals and all things wild. Therefore, I follow a pagan path....recognizing the turning of the wheel both as the seasons and in my life. I celebrate the ancinet pagan holidays. I also recognize the universal truths inherent in hinduism and budhism and incorporate that into my spiritual and material life.
Ocupation: Varies ~ Ideally it is fiber artist ~ spinning, natural dyeing, felting ~ all things fiber related. I also do work on various green and democratic initiatives.
Most Important Issues: Human overpopulation and the destruction of our global ecosytem, forest fragmentation, habitat loss, extinction and loss of biodiversity.
Music: Psychedelic Folk, old timey, bluegrass and other varieties of folk music.
Bands: Incredible String Band, Donovan, Greatful Dead, Bill Monroe, H.P Lovecraft, Richard and Mimi Farina, It's a Beautiful day, Jean Ritchie, Radiohead
Movies: Princess Monanokee, Beloved, Wicker man, What in the Bleep do we know, Head, Eternal Sunshine of The Spotless Mind, Easy Rider,Midnight Cowboy.
Books: The Song of the Dodo, The Gift of the Deer, A place in the Woods, Watership Down,Be Here Now, Tao Of Physics, Psychedelic Experience
Authors: Edward O Wilson, Timothy Leary, Richard Alpert (Ram Dass)
Food: 100% vegetarian with a heavy emphasis on raw foods. Young Thai coconut milk,all raw friuts and veggies,Tofurkey veggie slices, Quorn loaf, edame, Indian food, clean water..
Intrests: I love to spin wool and other fibers on my Ashford spinning wheel.I am an avid natural dyer, finding non native dye plants growing in disturbed roadside areas as I travel. I then use them to dye my handspun wool and other fibers with. I am also an avid needle felter and wet felter.
I love to play my mountain dulcimer by myself and jam with Moss as he plays banjo. We dont sound to great at present, but are working on it and haveing lots of fun.
My other great love in life is the enjoyment of nature and all things wild. Be it through hiking, bird watching, swimming in lakes and oceans or wildlife rehabilitation.I enjoy the study and celebration of nature in any and every form. When I am in a forest, on a mountain, desert or beach..I am at absolute peace.
I alo enjoy rehabilitating injured and orphaned wildlife which I used to do professionaly for 10 years, when I lived a stationary life.I keep a comprehensive medical kit on the bus with me for wildlife emergencies. If I happen across an animal in need I stabalize it and tranfer it to the nearest wildlife rehabilitator, wherever I happen to be.
Other intrests include, green, enviromentaly sound technology and architecture, voluntary simplicity and bikeing.
Negative Traits: No ones perfect right? Like everyone else I have "issues".So,to avoid presentimg myself as a perfect human, the following are some of the negative personality traits that come out from time to time...
Can be self rightous at times and have a bad temper. Talk before I think ,obessive compulsive, impatient, like to provoke, question and buck authority and accepted norms and am very impulsive and unpredicatable.
Favorite Quote: " You shall enter the liveing shelter of the forest. You shall walk where only the wind has walked before.." Nancy Newhall , This is the American Earth
Education: L.A Theatre Academy (Ba), Los Angeles Recording School (audio enginneering)
Music: All things psychedelic, electronica, bluegrass, folk even a little punk rock (real punk, not the teen pop they are calling punk lately)
Bands: Donovan,Incredible String Band,H.P Lovecraft, Grateful Dead,United States of America, Gary Numan, Syd Barrett, Alice Cooper, Bill Monroe, Orb, Psychic TV, Bau Haus
Books: Tao of pysics, Center of The Cyclone, Be Here Now, Psychedelic Experience,Food of The Gods
Movies: Head, I love you Alice B Toklas, Willy Wonka (original),Wicker Man
Intrests: Recording and writing music, playing banjo, hanging out in woods, danceing, acting, digeridoo and various ethnic insturments. Creating new sounds with analog synthesizers, hand drumming, hiking, shamanic/entheogenic plant research.
Ocupation: Sale of my C.D's~ I make music under the name H.R. Funk'n' Puff and my cd's name is Songs from the Electric Greenwood. Part of the year I work on green and democratic initiatives.
Negative Ttraits: can be passive agressive, sacarstic, self deprecating...
Food: 100% vegeatarian, 70% raw (or try to at least), I goin and out of veganism, indian food, raw coconut milk, bannnas.
Color: avacado and 70's orange
Actors: Crispin Glover, Harry Dean Stanton,Robin Williams,PeterSsellers,Dustin Hoffman Jodie Foster
Authors: John Lily, Ram Dass, Terrence Mckenna,Paramahansa Yogananda,
Favorite Quote: " When all else fails...turn off your mind, relax and float down stream ..." ~ Timothy Leary
Casper is a five year old, female Goffins cockatoo, originally from Washington state. Her disposition is very sweet and very goofy. She is extrememly smart and likes to play peekaboo and chase balls or waded up pieces of paper which she then brings back to me or throws up in the air. She loves to have her head scratched and her feet misaged. Although very friendly and somewhat co dependant with Moss and I, Casper is extremely phobic of other people..stemming from a traumatic vet experience when young.
Joseph is a Nanday conure of unknown age. While running a wild bird rehab clinic near Los Angeles a woman called one day saying she found an injured parrot on the ground in L.A and would I help.Of course, I said I would. I went to her house to pick him up and was presented with a small brown box. When I returned home I opened the box and out stepped this small green parrot,in very poor shape. On the box lid was written the words Joseph "stringy", hence we named him Joseph.
It was immediately aparent to me that he had been through something traumatic. His wing was broken and he was extremely thin and malnourished.I carefully applied a splint to his injured wing and with some suplemental warmth and good nutrition, he was soon thriving.
Despite his obvious trauma he was from day one a very sweet, though somewhat aloof and odd bird. He has never been aggressive to me or any of the other birds. In fact, he fell imediately in love with Casper and to this day it is hard to sperate them. His only goal in life it seems is to constantly preen Casper. He sometimes sleeps under Caspers wing. For his part,Casper enjoys the attention, but would much rather be with myself or Moss. Joseph tolerates us humans, but is very much a birds bird.
I have often wondered about his past and where he came from. I did search and put out adds for lost birds but never received a response. He could be 15 years old for all I know. Was he once someones cherished pet? Someone who owned a cockatoo that maybe he was bonded too ? In the area where he was found there are huge flocks of feral Nanday conures,just like Joseph, that live wild. Was he a member of a wild flock that became injured and slightly brain damaged from an accident? Maybe that would explain his odd tamness. I have always thought thwere was something off about his behaviour, and he is blind in one eye.
He does seem to recognize other conures, he gets very excited at his own reflection and once while visiting a campground near by, we were visited by a wild flock of Nanday Conures, very close to where he was found. He definitely recognized his species and they began calling back and forth excitedly. They wanted him to go with them, and I couldnt help but wonder if they were his original wild flock.
All the same, he is now liveing in a small aviary with Casper, On our bus. He is quite hapy and will have a home with us for the rest of his life..however long that may be..
Pippin is a three year old, male, European Starling that came to me by way of my rehab work. A woman called, explaining that she had found a young bird that needed help. She said that she was outside gardening when she felt a thud on the back of her head. She looked down to find a smallish grey bird sitting on the ground and begging incesently.. She picked it up and put it in a nearby tree and it imediately flew back to her. After goiing through these motions several more times she decided the bird needed help and brought it inside for warmth and food. She was eventually refered to me through a local vet and, although she lived almost two hours away, she drove the bird to me along with a 200 donation.
Since it was spring I had many other birds in the clinic awaiting release, including starlings. I put Pipin in the cage with about six other starlings, and his reaction confirmed my suspicions. He clung to the side of the cage screaming, terrified of the other starlings. Pipin was an "imprint" a wild bird raised partially by a human and then released or escaped into the wild. He did not recognize his own species and instead related to humans. He could never be released.
So, he now lives with us and has since adjusted to the other birds quite well, although is extremely bonded to me. Since starlings are a member of the myna bird family ( actually myna birds are a type of starling) his talking and mimicking abilities are phenomenal, a rare ability for a passerine species. Pipin has a vocabulary of some fifty words, including various odd noises and whistles.
He is a cocky and funny bird and we love him dearly.
Astra is a five year old, female European Starling that came to live with us while I was rehabbing in Oregon. She was also an unreleasable, imprinted bird that was given to me by another rehabber. Astra is very sweet, though not bonded to me in the way Pipin is. She is missing several of her toes due to them being bitten off by another bird, a quaker parrot, Elmo.
She also has a large vocabulary of words and whistles and is very close to Joseph, the conure, who has attempted to solict her on more than one ocasion. She lives in the same enclosure as Pipin.
The first year Moss and I were together we spent a good deal of time traveling around and liveing in a vw camper bus.
Once while driveing through Northern California we broke down near a great town called Willits, in the heart of the redwoods. A nice fellow stopped to help us, towed our car back to his place and let us stay there for a few days while it was fixed. The place was beautiful, a small communal house nestled deep in the redwoods .
While there someone stopped by with a box filled with puppies, one of the puppies, the prettiest and quietest one drew my attention. That puppy was Gaia and that was thirteen years ago.
She is a sweet, gentle dog and the smartest one you will ever know. Her mom was a golden retriever and her dad was a husky, she developed the best traits of both breeds, which happen to be my two favorite breeds. Her markings are pure husky but her temperment is so golden retriever. Her favorite things are swimming in lakes, rivers, creeks, and playing ball and stick, even at her now old age of thriteen.
Gaia is so well tempered she has never once hurt a wild animal. As a wildlife rehabber I know first hand the damage that dogs and cats can cause to native wildlife. Because of this I made it my mission to ensure that Gaia would never kill or chase the animals we lived with in the forest. While living so close to the earth in the tip, we had many oportunities to teach her as small animals and birds were constantly roaming through and around our home. It did not take her long to realize that these animals were friends and not food. I have seen a woodrat that used to share our tipi with us ( and even enjoy our warm fire with us on a cold night!) walk casually over her legs with her not even flinching.
We named her Gaia ( an earth goddess) because we were so inspired by the beauty and magik of the place where we met her...