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Small steps

This week it has been warm, sunny days. It makes me feel that I'd like to spend all of my free time in nature; picking berries and mushroom in the forest, fishing at the lake, riding with the horses. But unfortunately I haven't been able to do anything of those, as my days have been filled with massage work and getting my car fixed. (Changing a pair of shock absorbers for a year 1995 Volkswagen Passat - I thought that it will be just a routine maintenance, a couple of hours of work for my neighbour as he is very skilled with fixing cars. But it turned out that one spesific part was rusted far beyoud being usable - and that no-one sells just that exact spare part. Finally my neigbour just welded together a custom part which did the trick and he got the car fixed. I so do like people who can make their own solutions when you can't simply buy a ready-made thing.)

Yesterday afternoon, after helping my neighbour fixing my car, I briefly visited my home to feed my animals. The young roosters are roaming free, foraging for most of their food. I was inside a barn, getting a bale of hay for the horses, and I heard the roosters making a hell of a noise. I thought that they are just fighting with each others for the oat seeds I just gave them. But then it sounded more like distress calls, and I could hear the sound of one rooster going away from the yard, very rapidly. Actually, much more faster than I can imagine a rooster running or flying. So I rushed to see what is going on. But all the roosters were gone, it was all silent. I didn't have time to investigate, so I just gave the hay for the horses, jumped into my car and left to do some massage. When I returned back home at the late evening I went to check the roosters. One of them was missing, the rest had gathered into their shelter, as they always do for the night. So, I guess that there was some sort of a predator which took one of them, in the middle of the day, in the middle of my yard. If it was a fox, my dog would surely be alarmed, so I think it must have been a falcon. Many times I have seen a big falcon circling over the fields, but I never thought that they would dare to hunt in my yard. But why not, a rooster is a tasty easy catch.

Well, I think that the wild animals have an equal right to eat my roosters as I do, no problem with that. If they were all of my own, I could just decide how much risk I want to take; if a predator learns that there is easy food in my yard, I might just lose all the roosters in a week... But the roosters aren't actually mine, I'm just hosting them for my neighbours, and the deal is that later on in the autumn when the temperature drops well below freezing I'll kill the roosters and we will share the meat. And I know my neighbours did a good work taking care of the chickens when they were small, so it would feel like a waste if I then just feeded all the chickens to wild animals... So, I decided to keep the roosters inside a small fenced area. They aren't happy with that, they are waiting for me to open the gate so that they could again enjoy their freedom. Uh oh, I should have a bigger fenced area for them. But I'm afraid that I won't have time to constuct a new fenced area for them.

So what is this? I'm living in my tiny house, running my homestead with a garden and animals. The forests are rich of berries, the lake is beautiful and I like fishing - it is just that I don't have enough free time to spend at home, taking care of the household and the animals, foraging and fishing for my own food... As I have to spend time away from my home, working to get money to pay for the house and stuff (or fixing my car, so that I can do my work). But then, on the other hand - something like fifteen years ago I was living in a city, dreaming about buying a house in the countryside, but I felt that it will never be possible for me. And now I'm here, so there is nothing to complain about that. I love my work, and it earns me just enough money to pay my expenses. So it is small steps, learning to find a better and a sustainalbe balance between working for money and being free at home and in nature. Step by step, month by month, year by year it is getting better.

Today I returned from work at 8 pm. It was not yet dark, and I went to feed the animals. In the late evening twilight I could see the first stars in the sky. I went to pet my horses, and mounted Raiku the young mare. Once mounted I leaned forward to remove her halter, throwing the halter and the lead rope outside the pen. I was left with no means to control the horse, but I was not going to ask her to do anything special. It is enough just to carry me, to be together, enjoying the late evening. A bat was circling over the yard, we could hear a black-throated diver calling down at the lake, and as it got darker more stars appeared. There were swans trumpeting, the horses started to scratch each other. I enjoyed the moment, and thought that it is not so bad - I work for money to keep my household up and running, and nature provides energy to keep me up and running.

After that I lit a camp-fire and took my shaman drum. It was already dark, and I spent a while beating the drum. Beat by beat, step by step, I feel that I'm more and more able to live the way I like to live, to be true to my inner self.

beating a shaman drum
beating a shaman drum
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Hello there from Russia.

Erkka, you just can't imagine how happy you are with all this stuff you're telling. It's a great pleasure to read about your life, nature and all the coming gladness.

I really wish I could live the way you do. Though I'm younger, being only 22 yers old, I kinda feel that I missed something already and continue missing. Hope to meet you someday, always planned to visit Finland.

Be well and good luck!

Hello! I suppose in real-life modern day Russia one can't simply walk into an half-empty village and settle in an abandoned house like Дядя Фёдор did =) Ah, that was one of my favorite books when I was child! (for those who don't get it: I'm speaking of a book called "Uncle Fyodor, His Dog and His Cat" by Eduard Uspensky. When I was kid our mother read the Finnish translation to us, and the story is absolutely hilarious.

Ah, and if you ever get to visit Finland, contact me beforehand - my house is tiny but welcomes visitors!

.. and what is really hilarious -- it is to find out that this very story, which I supposed to be only known in Russia, is read to children in Finland! Actually not much people from Russia ever read this story, but almost all watched a cartoon.

By the way, thanks for welcoming! I doubt I'll have an opportunity in 2013, though I aim for the next Summer. And one more thing, mind if we exchange mail adresses to stay in contact? Mine is pkawol (at) gmail (dot) com.

Looking at today's perspective, Uspenski was a genius at 1974 when he wrote that book; it features things like solar power and a tractor running on bio-fuel =)

Well, a lot of his books are translated to Finnish - and I guess to another languages as well, but I certainly don't know how popular they are elsewhere. So, if any parents happen to read this comments; go try books by Uspenski, they make a good and enjoyable read! I also liked the one where there are little men living in vacuum-cleaners, radios, clocks and such. They work to keep the devices in good condition - but when the warranty time is over, they return back to the factory (and this is why we see so many products getting broken soon after the warranty is over...)

Summer 2014 sounds fine! I'll send you and e-mail, no problem.


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