Seeing Green: A Dancing Rabbit Update

This was a great week for casserole baking in the solar oven. Photo by Dennis.
This was a great week for casserole baking in the solar oven. Photo by Dennis.

Greetings gentle readers!  Cob here, filling in for one of our regular writers this week.  As I sit thinking back on the happenings of the past week, I am struck by the deep vibrant green that has taken over the world, wherever I look.  The long overdue rain has not only revived the gardens and brought much needed moisture to the soil, but it has rinsed the dust and pollen off the trees and grasses, making everything look good enough to eat.

If there is any pattern or theme to recent days, it is certainly one of renewal and the promise of new growth. The current visitor session has drawn to a close, and many of these fine folk have applied for residency or are otherwise finding hosts to extend their personal visits as they continue to explore life at Dancing Rabbit. Some are leaving, but have promised to return next season to help work on the many projects that have excited them during their brief visit.

This particular group of visitors was exceptional in their embrace of some of the practices we encourage everyone to try. Once they got their bearings in the first few days, this diverse group of strangers formed their own breakfast club… taking turns preparing breakfasts for each other, and collaborated to help with child-care so that parents could participate in all the education sessions they didn’t want to miss.  They also sought out additional work and play opportunities with member rabbits during hours they weren’t participating in the more formal classes.  They even threw a few fun social events of their own, inviting the entire village to participate. It’s exciting to see so much enthusiasm and interest; a few even participated in the open portions of the Dancing Rabbit Board’s first-ever strategic planning retreat!

That’s right, our Board was on-farm for a two-day strategic planning retreat.  It’s hard to find time to attend to such things properly, when you’re in the midst of day-to-day busyness and quarterly phone conferences just don’t lend themselves to the same quality of deep-extended conversation. Our little non-profit is growing up and taking a new look at how we can leverage our experience here on the ground in Scotland county to have a larger impact on the world and to spread the change we see as vital to the long-term health of our planet and civilization.  This is one of the things I truly love about Dancing Rabbit….we aren’t trying to create our own little private utopia or hide away from society, nor do we give in to the hopelessness or despair over the scope of the challenges our world is facing. We are not working for real change individually, on our own—we are working together, in community with our fellow rabbits here and with each and every one of you out there. Together, we make sustainability possible.

We can hardly "contain" our excitement about Sam's new grocery store! Photo by Nik.
We can hardly “contain” our excitement about Sam’s new grocery store! Photo by Nik.

On a less lofty (but just as exciting) note, Sam’s local grocery store is in the midst of a serious upgrade.  The years-old and degrading army tent is being replaced with a recycled steel shipping container, providing for rodent-secure food storage and a more convenient shopping experience. The good folks from Global Storage Systems out of LaPlata delivered the container during our weekly potluck, and at first seemed a little put-off by the large crowd of onlookers as the container was off-loaded and positioned on an old cement pad. The applause and cheers when the last edge dropped the final inch (with a resounding bang) won them over however, and they enjoyed an impromptu tour of the village before heading out.

A long time friend of Dancing Rabbit, Frank Cicela of Rutledge, will bring his crew from Deep Green Machine out with the necessary equipment to cut a doorway and a few windows for the upgraded grocery store, perhaps a picture of the finished project will be available for next weeks column!

Among other visitors this week, will be Rachel’s parents…and that means it’s DR Musical time! That’s right, many rabbits have been practicing their lines and their songs for a highly abbreviated (and non-traditional) rendition of Fiddler on the Roof.  We’ll be spending this week in rehearsals with Rachel’s mother, and under her practiced eye and direction should be ready for the big performance at the end of the week. A few numbers will even be performed on the square in Memphis on Friday, June 6th as part of the Rally for Life. Rumor has it we’ll be performing at 8:00 pm, around the time of the cake walk.

Now it’s time for me to run along to may garden and clear more space for transplants. To Life!

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Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage is an intentional community and nonprofit outside Rutledge, in northeast Missouri, focused on demonstrating sustainable living possibilities. We offer a free tour to the public at 1 p.m. on the 2nd and 4th Saturdays of the month, April through October. Find out more about us by visiting our our website, reading our blog, or emailing us.



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