Thank you! A few minutes ago, this project that I began in the fall of 2011 has seen its 100,000th visitor: not 100,000th page view or click, but, well, you. You have a lot to do, and yet here we all are, walking the grassland together. For that wonderful gift, a special flower! Nice, huh!
Ponderosa Pine in Full Bloom
Along the way, I have become a different person, have learned this land intimately (although I thought I knew it intimately before), have found myself standing at home in the midst of an ancient culture and more at one with the valley and the whole basalt sea it has opened within, have burnt through four cameras, three computers and ten hard drives, and have typed out nearly 900,000 words, which is eleven full-length books, which is 1,911 posts, which is plainly, perhaps, as my Aunt Meli the archaeologist’s daughter used to say in Freiburg back in the day, typisch Rhenisch. Indeed. And you’re still hanging in there, one more of you every day! You are great guests! Every post brings one more of you to the gang, to use my mother’s word, bless her. Well, that calls for more flowers.
Thank you, everyone. The project began as a way of collecting material to write about working with the land instead of replacing it with dangerous, poisonous and socially-expensive nuclear reactors. I never expected to be so transformed by the journey, or for so many of you to be walking with me among the ponderosas that taught me to read the world well over half a century ago, but I’m sure glad you’re coming home to the Earth with me, and it’s good to have you among these most beautiful of trees (although, yeah, I know, competition is strong for that one). I feel blessed. I hope you’re enjoying the company, too! I hope to have a bit of a party. I’ll keep you posted, but, as you know, that goes without saying. I just wanted to say thank you, tonight, for being so supportive of this conversation.