Last Thanksgiving, the NYTimes published an unusually good op-ed on an unusually fraught subject: how to survive Thanksgiving with difficult relatives. Written by Henry Alford, it began something like this: Like you, I have often wondered, “How might a hostage negotiator help the average American family get through Thanksgiving?” I’ve had this thought not because ofContinue reading “Tips for Surviving Thanksgiving (aka “Compassion”)”
Category Archives: Travel
Record CA drought hits illegal pot grows
From a story in last week's Ojai Valley News:
Three years ago, local narcotics officers eradicated about 168,000 marijuana plants from Ventura County's backcountry.
This year, they've found much less — closer to 100,000.
So is that good news or bad?
Neither, say law enforcement officials. California's historic drought is drying up more than just lakes and reservoirs, it's draining the creeks and aquifers far upstream — the ones that marijuana growers utilize to water their gardens, which often contain thousands of plants.
"We had one up in Coyote Creek … and half of the grow was abandoned," said Sgt. Mike Horne of the Ventura County Sheriff's Office (VCSO) Narcotics Bureau. "They're just running out of water." In another grow near the Ortega Trail, he added, "When we went to cut it, it was gone — the reservoir had dried up."
Arguably this is burying the lede. It's not a question of good news or bad news. It's simpler — the drought is devastating everyone, even the illegal farmers ready and willing to cut corners.We may recall the Biblical words from Matthew: the rain falls on the just and the unjust alike. Here's a new version: the drought hits the law-abiding farmers and the unlawful farmer alike.
More detail from Misty Volaski, editor of the paper, below the fold, with a pic from a back country grow in Rose Valley busted last month.
The freedom in walking lies in being no one: Philosopher
A delightfully light (but thoughtful) interview focuses on a new book — A Philosophy of Walking — written by a French professor who takes the subject so seriously he's nervous about answering questions from a reporter. From The Guardian: It is a sunny spring Sunday and – joy! – I am off to Paris toContinue reading “The freedom in walking lies in being no one: Philosopher”
A spiritual retreat ruled by a cat: St. Barbara Monastery
Hidden in an oak woodland, across a bridge and over a stream, on Highway 150 not far from Thomas Aquinas College in Ventura County, can be found one of the least ordinary of sanctuaries for the traveler in search of spiritual renewal.
Rickshaw Run: the ultimate journey-not-destination
Nick Anderman, a near-relative — my daughter's boyfriend — is with three other friends adventuring through India in a fundraising race via underpowered ricksaw, which, as this writer for the Atlantic points out this month, is pretty much the ultimate journey-not-destination. Nick and his pals are avoiding the big cities because they're impossible to cross in aContinue reading “Rickshaw Run: the ultimate journey-not-destination”