Sunday, July 12, 2009

Pocatello, Idaho to Salt Lake City, Utah

nearing salt lake city

i can see the temple off the left side of the bus. this is mormon territory. lds, as they're called - latter day saints. apparently part of their belief is about preparedness, and all mormons are required to have a year's worth of supplies in the event of .... whatever it is they're waiting for. the return of jesus? no, that's those other guys. a year's worth of food, water, guns and ammo .... wait a minute, if you have guns and ammo, surely you can get the other stuff easily enough.

i shouldn't be so crass. it's just that, although i'm enamoured with the work of the pastors for peace, i'm not here as a representative of any particular faith. although i do appreciate the quiet contemplative way of the quakers. and i can relate with some of indigenous spirituality, and some wicca. i appreciate that i can be a part of this group, and do this work, without being forced into any particular doctrine of belief. as lisa mentioned last night when we were talking with the pocatello unitarians, we're not a cult. people go into this thing knowing full well what they're getting themselves into. we're from various socio-economic and ethnic backgrounds, some people steeped in the tradition of faith, some not. what unites us is a curiousity about, and a love for, cuba. the cuban people and their revolusion. their struggle to create an economic and social alternative to global corporate capitalism. the strength of their belief, their endurance, their intelligence, their compassion.

all 'blasphemous' comments aside, i am very grateful for the unitarians who host and support us along the way. although we don't believe in the same 'god' (i'm still searching for a word to describe what i believe in, being unwilling to twist my head around re-defining that ancient meaning-filled word every time i hear it), these people are willing to host us in many cities across these the inflated states of erratica - feeding us, letting us use their showers and laundry, offering a piece of their floor or their spare room or their couch. all kidding aside, we're very thankful for that.

it's raining a little bit, as we approach the city that borders the great salt lake. the hills between here and pocatello are decidedly greener than they were last year. don, our poca host, explained it's been a very wet and cold spring which is tough on some of the farmers who aren't used to it, but i sure feel better being surrounded by some green. i couldn't live in the desert, with its lack of water .... it'd scare me.

it was a good drive. rick is a terrific driver, though i'll confess to a white knuckle moment when we were approaching 70 mph on that downward hill.

in the pocatello kitchen last night, after the potluck (i had cole slaw salad and cherries and grapes), i listened to two men air their concerns about a phospherous mine to the south of the town as dishes were washed and dried. apparently it's starting to leach selenium, and that's having some impact on livestock in the area. phospherous is used primarily in chemical pesticides, also in toothpaste and clothing. i'm sure we can figure out something else to use in toothpaste and clothing. it's really just another good reason to support organic agriculture.

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