I am back in the world of phones and computers and things, sitting in my girl dani’s basement with the laundry going, about to head up and take my first non-pond water shower in a week. Le funk is upon me, and the whole experience was really humbling.


Since I first heard of ruckus I wanted to find a way to be involved, because it just seemed like serious people with serious wins under their belt. Since I first saw New Orleans after Katrina, I’ve been obsessed with the idea of survival, especially for those communities on the frontlines of this climate crisis. This week was the walk down the ideological aisle in a way, getting to meet people who have a deep knowledge of how to survive.


These people for whom I have the utmost respect got to see me fumble around a massive kitchen with only a surface knowledge of how to cook or clean for 40 people – a gifted Ruckutista named Rose patiently intervened; they saw me scootch up a rope which busted my hand open – I got halfway up and hung upside down and it was one of most challenging distances I’ve crossed. I can’t wait to do it again. Emilie and Satya were gentle and encouraging as I faced how hard it is to get yourself up a rope.


These fgood people got to see me pitch my first tent, then roll my big suitcase in there and take several days to realize we just couldn’t both fit comfortably. I got to stand out in a torrential downpour, get into a pond where I couldn’t see the bottom and slowly stop checking myself every 30 seconds for leeches. And I square danced! I cut open my finger cutting apples, twisted my ankle dancing, and I define dirty.

Basically on every front it was clear how little I know of that world, and clear – at least to me – how little this set of amazing people know about my world. It will take a wealth of patience and effort to bridge the two, but I think for the survival of both, there has to be a real connection made between the survivalists and the frontlines. I await more opportunities for growth.

But first, a nap and a shower.