In Praise of Ruins

The Occidental Yacht Club in 2009, before it began to seriously buckle Maybe the Occidental Yacht Club was not such a great idea to begin with. At six hundred feet above sea level, the town of Occidental is a dozen winding miles down to the cliffs and breaks of Sonoma‚Äôs unforgiving shores. While I have […]

Joe’s Mushroom Report

artist/musician/chef Josef Szuecs of The-Way-To-Go-Joes My friend and neighbor Josef Szuecs is one of the most multi-talented people I’ve ever met. Owner of Renga Arts in Occidental, CA, guitarist/founder of the locally popular, self-described ‘porch jazz’ combo, The-Way-To-Go-Joes, Joe is also an accomplished chef, and his food often features seasonal fare he hunts, grows, fishes […]

The Week in Bloom

After more than three years on the land we’re getting a better feel for the rhythm of the garden and the fruit trees and have successfully stocked the larder with treats for the rainy season to come. Working with friends and neighbors, we’ve harvested and pressed all of our Gravensteins, which yielded about 20 gallons […]

Running Fence Revisited #1

A section of the fabric from Christo’s ‘Running Fence’ (1976) is used as a backdrop for the Salami Toss at the Occidental Fire Department’s annual summer barbecue. When Christo and Jeanne-Claude realized their seminal Running Fence project in West Sonoma County in the mid-1970’s, they traded materials used to construct the 24 mile long fence […]

The Week in Bloom

Wild Cherry (Prunus avium) Since I was a teenager I’ve always ridden nimble, road racing bikes and my attention has been on speed and navigating the road to avoid flats. Inspired by our rural environs and the Rivendell ethos, I’ve recently swapped out my racing machines in favor of a sturdier, Surly Long Haul Trucker, […]

Haptic Holidays

If this holiday season is any indication, we’re beginning to see a backlash in values brought on by the worsening economy. People everywhere are simplifying, getting together and willing public celebrations into being as an antidote to the collective breath-holding pending the transition of power in Washington and all of its perilous promise. Our family’s […]