Back in the Saddle

I got back late Friday, after having spent a mostly restful week in the San Juan Islands and Seattle. We stayed part of the time with a couple of ex-SF Bay Area friends who built a house on 45 acres on Lopez Island. The husband left the Tech industry about five or so years ago and now works on an organic farm, among other things.

While there’s a high-speed Internet connection at the house, it’s otherwise a rural existence (they get water from a well dug on the property; kitchen stove is run on propane, etc). I wouldn’t necessarily give up my current life for theirs, but it was very appealing on several fronts.

I didn’t check email “online” but I had my HTC phone and was sucked in on the tail end of the trip when we were back in Seattle. When I finally started looking at it this weekend, I had more than 1000 emails, most of which I just deleted (that was liberating), many of which I’ve tried to respond to and some of which I have still to answer.

After we arrived in Seattle/Lopez it took me a few days to relax, sort of like going through coffee withdrawal. Once I did I didn’t miss blogging — I guess I’m not “compulsive” after all — or reading about technology. In fact, all this tech news is in a way like “fast food for the mind.”

Speaking of which over the past week I read In Defense of Food by Michael Pollan (author of Omnivore’s Dilemma). A simple but great book, I recommend it to anyone interested in the subject of healthy eating or as neurotic about their diet as I am. It speaks of food, food science and farming but ultimately it’s a critique of American culture at large.


7 Responses to “Back in the Saddle”

  1. Tim Cohn Says:

    Welcome back!

    Tell us more about Kayaking…

  2. Greg Sterling Says:

    Thanks. Yes, we went Kayaking. At the end we were in a lightning storm.

  3. Rob Says:

    Sounds like a great trip. I lived on San Juan Island right after college and worked at an small little “resort” called Snug Harbor. The San Juans are a wonderful place to unwind. Sounds like it did the trick for you.

  4. Greg Says:

    Although the relaxation is almost gone.

  5. sean Says:

    RE: in fact, all this tech news is in a way is like “fast food for the mind.”

    could not agree more and, alas, super-sized by RSS readers.

    Recall’s Lyotard’s argument: In scientific and technological research, the State and/or private sector which funds it (almost exclusively) have to abandon narratives of Justice and Truth that are not reducible to a narrative whose telos is efficiency. Any attempt to articulate a truth not based on the optimization of performance is abandoned because it is not obvious how it can increase power or wealth. In a world where success means gaining time, thinking has a single, but irredeemable, fault: it is a waste of time.

  6. MiriamEllis Says:

    Greg –
    Your friend’s farm sounds like heaven! We are working toward the same thing, though not with the plan right now of leaving our business behind any time soon.

    Not having a lot of fun with our well, though. Expecting the Culligan Man today as our water currently looks like green tea. Yuck.

    The joys of country living! I’m so glad you had a great break.

  7. Greg Sterling Says:

    Thanks Miriam

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