Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Off the Grid with the Kids

It takes a little while after the sun has risen for this 15 acre pasture to fill with light. Then it stays lit all day. If you click on the photo you'll see the last patch of snow up by the tree line. The ranch is at 2200 feet altitude. The air was clear and bright. At night the stars were layer upon layer deep, and the darkness between was limitless.
There are seven horses on Indigo's and Sky's ranch. Indigo gives each of them her deep and undivided attention. They seem to have a symbiotic relationship, she and her horses, learning from each other the secrets of their respective species. It is a parent's joy to watch a child come into her own. She is completely on the turf of her dreams. From 4H to 40 acres. She has come home.

Roger sez:
it was a wonderful realization for me in the middle of the night that we were in our adult daughter's house. i am a proud father. we had not seen her and her hubby for a year and a half. far too long. part of why we are leaving port townsend to move closer to family. i was teary for a hundred miles after her goodbye hug. like many men, i am not so good at describing my feelings, but i can say with certainty that it will never again be so long before another visit no matter where we live. and our resolve to move is even doubled by our love for our other daughter in san francisco.
This solar collector supplies the three-bedroom, two bath house with enough power to light the lamps in all the rooms. It also runs a 12 volt refrigerator, fills the house with music from an iPod, heats our mattress pad, and any other small appliance we might deem absolutely necessary. There's a diesel generator that runs the washing machine (and dryer on days when there's not enough sun to line dry), and a propane oven and stove. We did not miss having a TV or microwave. Although, I suspect that another set of panels would have made the house an equal to the energy monstrosities considered requisite for the modern American life.

Our desire to sell the Port Townsend house has been renewed with even more vigor. We could live quite easily off the grid in Humboldt County. In fact, it felt like second nature already. With high speed internet, we would be home.

We're planning our trip back to Port Townsend for some time next week. We'll keep you posted.

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