I almost always leave Green Gulch Farm with a tug in my heart. As I make my way out and up the long dirt road to Highway 1 the usual thought arises: I don’t want to leave.
I’m reluctant to get too sentimental about Green Gulch, though. After all, I don’t live there. I am keenly aware that living there and visiting are two vastly different experiences. Green Gulch is an intentional community. I’ve been living on my own for the past ten years with my lovely little cat and my own washer and dryer (seriously, having my own washer and dryer is just…a blessing. I do not take this lightly.).
In trying to explain my affinity for the place, I recently told a friend of mine that the land there speaks to me. I was kind of embarrassed to admit this. Even saying it out loud felt strange. But it’s true, despite my not really understanding it. When I step onto the pedestrian path and begin my descent into the heart of Green Gulch, the eucalyptus trees, the flowers, the redwoods, all the little grasses and the insects and the birds and the wind, rise up to greet me with an unspoken language. It is a silent expression of welcoming and belonging that I still can’t quite bring myself to fully believe, though I feel it overwhelmingly each time I’m there.
On my way into San Francisco recently, I found myself standing on MUNI, looking down at other people’s shoes. They were nice. I mean, they were spotless and expertly coordinated with their outfits and everything. And then I looked down at my own shoes: heel-worn, black booties still caked with dirt and mud from traipsing around Green Gulch almost every weekend. At first I felt a flush of embarrassment. Why oh why hadn’t I made time to clean my shoes?? But then, I thought, no, this is perfect. This is my life right now. I’ll take it.
(What I'm listening to: Alicia Keys - The Gospel.)
(What I'm reading: The Nature Fix by Florence Williams. Highly recommend!)