If you dream of country life, or like the idea of a simple world coming to life with real stories but have neither the time or ability to make it a personal reality, then might I suggest a really good way to live vicariously: Katherine Dunn.
A woman who tells the most incredible stories with words and in pictures has captured my heart and imagination for years but never more so than when she created Apifera Farm.
It’s on this farm in Oregon that she talks about raising lambs and lavender and tells the sweetest stories about the other animals (I dare you to not be taken by Pedro and Juanita). But what is the most amazing thing to me, in all over this, is how she invites people to be a part of it.
Either by describing so richly her days or by offering a way to donate money to restore her historic barn, or buy purchasing lavender that she grows or paintings that she makes, there is a way to be a part of this world unlike any other.
For a city girl like me, her sites are so very welcomed and the idea of farm sponsorship tickles me. It offers a way to connect with something I one day want by helping make someone else’s dream real in the meantime.
As I’ve written about before, I often find in todays world a great disconnect amongst people. We’re on our computers and in our homes and venture out less and I think, often help our neighbours out even lesser. We shop at the Walmart for the discount and send money off to Biafrans on TV, but we sometimes shun the person next door and say “take care of your own life” or to artists “your products are too high in price. what you do is not worth it to me.”
Perhaps via Katherine there is a way for you to help (her dream or yours), a way to support or live vicariously. If not with Katherine perhaps with someone else – someone down the street or someone next door.
I’ve done a lot of things, most things, on my own because I don’t have the family support, I don’t have a network of friends and I always thought that support and help was weak and embarrassing. But that’s such a twentieth-century, technology driven mindset. It’s why stay at home mums are now going crazy – they’re trying to do it all on their own whereas history has always had a village or huge family to help raise kids. Without supporting each other, reaching individual and global goals are so much harder.
What I love about Katherine’s idea is that she isn’t afraid to ask for support and offers different ways for support to come to her (donations, sponsorship, buying her products, leaving comments on her site). I wish there were more ways to remove the fear of asking for help and the anger that some people feel towards those who do.