Mr Don Gato - le monde de geneviève

Hollyhocks

Hollyhocks

I am in my 50s (how did that happen?). I did not grow up in the world of personal computers, cell phones, tablets, iPods, etc. It was with great excitement that my family bought a color television. The old black and white set was relegated to my mother's bedroom, where it sat on her dresser with her wire coat hanger antenna. When one of us was sick (or pretending to be), we would camp in Mom's room and watch from her bed. We did not have remote controls. I think we got 4 channels.Mannix, starring Mike Connors, ran from 1967 to 1975.

(Go Out and Seton Watch!)

At first I heard the name of this activity as Seated Watching. Ernest Thompson Seton (1860-1946) was a naturalist and wildlife artist, born in England to Scottish parents. His family emigrated to Toronto, Canada when he was a child. He reportedly retreated to the woods to escape his abusive father.

Ernest Thompson Seton

The idea is pretty simple. Find a comfortable spot outdoors, sit quietly, and observe. Each of us chose a spot, and every day for the week we had varying lengths of time set aside to go sit and observe. You might think my spot was the frog pond, but it was not. I did my own version of Seton watching in the early morning hours at the pond. My "official" Seton watch spot was in a hammock under the trees at the edge of the meadow leading to the pond. My first choice was actually an old school desk in the woods, but I could not remember which trail went there, and the hammock was empty and close by.

Wonder Walk (Wonder Walk instructions)

Wonder Walking is done in pairs, with each person taking turns as Leader and as Follower. We did this on the first day when we really did not know each other, so there was an element of trust that had to be assumed in turning yourself over to stranger to be led eyes closed. The odd thing is that I was much more relaxed as the Follower than I was the Leader. Maybe not that odd, when I think about it!

Rafael leads me on a Wonder Walk. Photo by Abba Charice Carmichael for IHE, 2016.Photo by Abba Charice Carmichael for IHE, 2016.

If you are at all curious about Wonder Walking, I am game to go on one with you. Just let me know!

Kimmy mini tutos
Unfortunately, this young mother is destined to last her whole life in a wheelchair because the infection has spread all over the spine.

Group Outdoor Art Project

When this activity was announced, my first reaction was "Can not I do an art project by myself? "Once a loner, always a loner. (I am trying to prove that wrong in my old age.) As an art museum register, I found it particularly interesting that all of the groups chose ephemeral, performance pieces. Some involved sound, including music created with natural objects in the environment. Flowers played a big role in other offerings. My group did a participatory, silent piece that resulted in a bird bath filled with flowers. It was quite beautiful. Also I enjoyed the group process more than I admit.

Also highly recommended: eating your meals with friends out of doors. And campfires with campsongs (learn the lyrics to Señor Don Gato; you'll thank me) and (vegan) S'mores.

Get outside, and please, turn off

your electronic devices!