in body

up early, after a full night’s sleep. today is the second full day of action camp set-up. yesterday we raised 7 massive tents to use as training spaces, helped finish a bamboo/tarp cooking structure with freestanding appliances (like, probably nicer than your home kitchen). several “shitters” – basically outhouses – have been built for this camp. also, sinks, solar showers, and tomorrow a scaffolding for the climb trainings.

i learn so much during these set-up days. this is not my natural skill set. i’m a talker, and a writer. i don’t grasp half the terms that get tossed around, and i have allergies, and i eventually reach a breaking point when i am covered in dirt and sweat and sunscreen. my neck cricks up at the mention of physical labor. i carry more weigh on my bones than i need, and it creates additional soreness and pain.

but i also know that the skill of building things, organizing a space for people to share, thinking about the food and bathroom and sleeping and washing and learning needs of participants who live on this island, and indigenous participants from all over the northwest, and the rest of the folks who will find their way over here…this is life skill building.

putting up the tents
putting up the tents

i want to know these skills for my octavia butler self, and for the part of me that is a daughter-sister-aunt. no matter how far we traverse into the wonders of the mind, into the words we can write and the things we can think, while we are on this earth we have to be in body with each other, care for and love each others’ physical selves.

now i have tucked myself into my little room to get as much alone time as i can out of the morning. i am a cave dweller, i prefer to be alone most of the time. and yet i hope this is something i can reprogram a bit, because politically i know we aren’t meant to be alone. we yearn for a connectedness that honors who we are. so i take my alone time and it is respected, and allows me to jump into the day and be WITH amazing and knowledgeable people.

learn, learn, learn.