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2022-11-27 20:53:32 (UTC)

Goals Reflection: November 2022


[Names and locations have been obscured to preserve privacy.]

I stayed in the tent with the new additions - the rain fly and the tent stove - for maybe three days before the temperatures dropped into the teens (Fahrenheit), and the latter half of November was spent in a bunk room. Just this weekend I was able to stay in the tent overnight, and will do so again tonight, while temperatures are in the low 20s. We'll see just how cold it has to be before I completely throw in the towel and stay in a bunk room until March or whatever.

I've managed to do a wide variety of repairs and activities this past month. One was bad: I blew-out the valve on a tractor tire, and had to take it to town for repairs. That wasn't too expensive, fortunately. A second thing I did this month was replace the starter motor on one of our trucks. It's running great, and I'm pleased with that. Finally, I've been doing a lot of wood box-making as well as wood burning, and I'm pleased with the outcomes.

The eco-institute had its first set of holidays this month. Obviously Thanksgiving is on that list, and considering I'd spent the past several Thanksgiving holidays on my own this was a radical change for me. Including me, there were 10 people in attendance, and we all ate hearty. There was so much pie...! Vegan, too. I made a vegan pie crust to contribute to the food, then spent most of the time washing dishes. One of the guys bagged three turkeys with his high-powered air rifle, and I contributed briefly with the removal of the bird's wings and most of its feathers.

We have a new intern here, and he seems like a good fit. Also one of the "eco-tourists" here has been around for a month, and I think she'll be starting as an intern tomorrow (Monday). It's a nice time for these folks to join in, since there are all these holiday celebrations and half-days going on.

We also heard news about the former intern who suddenly left a couple months ago. He's been accused of stealing a bunch of money from a person or persons he met with the night he also told me he was leaving. So it goes. It's doubtful he'll be back here any time soon.

A somewhat amusing story about this topic... So one of the contributions I received last month was in cryptocurrency: bitcoin and etherium. Being cagey and luddite, I resisted creating a wallet and all that nonsense. Finally I relented and sent the links to the contributor so they could pass the crypto along to me. That happened on a Wednesday or Thursday. I sold it all off the following Sunday. "I mean, fuck that stupid shit," I think I said. So I ended up saving like $800 when I bailed and the crypto tanked further. I don't have time to speculate currencies and whatever.

Beyond that, money expenditure was relatively drama-free on my end. I'm resigned to the fact I'm draining my savings until I'm no longer an intern, and I need to manage things as best I can. I'll take myself for weekends away from the institute only after I receive these pledged funds.

Letters are still going around and out, and I receive them semi-regularly. I feel a lot more secure about my nearby PO Box, much closer than the previous one and with 24-hour access. I can actually visit the PO Box on my lunch break, should I need to.

My mother and brother had their birthdays this month. I had grandiose plans to make sing-along videos and there was a point I realized I wouldn't be able to make them this year. My energy's been scattered with the upcoming holiday events and supervision of the interns, so text messages and phone calls were all I was able to manage. It didn't help that they have the flu cycling through the family (three kids in school and two elderly residents, plus two active, working adults), so my mother was sleeping off her various sicknesses most of the month.

Weight has flopped around 180 - 185. I overate this past week with the holidays, and I don't feel bad about that at all. Still avoiding illnesses, as is everyone else around here. Still staying consistent with cold-immersion therapy, and I doubt anyone else around here really wants to do such a thing.

As I spend more time around the interns, I have become more aware of the... various opinions regarding health and wellness, and things like homeopathic preparations and remedies. I'm overhearing one now as I type this. Considering I have no health insurance right now, I may come to the point that I'll consider these sorts of things as my main method of healthcare, and drastically shifting away from contemporary healthcare. Not sure how I feel about that. There's more I ought to research regarding this. Since it's the winter and relatively slow, when compared to "event season" in the summer, I may have time for it. It's a matter of prioritization.

Lots of meal-socialization with my fellow interns this month. Welcoming two new people to the institute, and sharing a bunk room with someone else, it can't be helped. Board games (playing and designing) and movies are the primary methods of entertainment. Reading - including a couple gardening books and a collection of short horror stories, all from Goodwill - are also on the docket.

I've been digging back into video games sporadically, including a few rounds of old-skool Donkey Kong before the workday begins. Today I reinstalled software for video game-making and may jump back into that over the winter. Recently I've been preoccupied with writing my own "Choose Your Own Adventure" story/stories, and may be able to pick that up over the winter as well. Jotting down notes and cogitating ideas these past few weeks.

The holiday season is here, and feels very new to me. Spending more time in community and around more people has its high and low points. I still want to stay alone, in my tent, so long as the weather isn't too cold. I'm enjoying life right now.