Video, Visits, Learning & More: A Dancing Rabbit Update

Adriana is just one of many of the rabbits who were part of our new introduction video.
Adriana was just one of many Rabbits who were part of the new DR intro video.

Tereza here, starting with just a quick note on the lovely weather. This last week was so much warmer and sunnier than it’s been I just have to mention it. I know I’m not the only one whose mood has improved with the reprieve from the dark and cold. Lots more noise, from wood chopping and power tools and kids playing outside, led to a much more lively feel in the village as well.

Careful readers of last week’s online version of this update may have noticed a late-breaking newsflash at the very bottom. Well, I’m so excited about what it said I’m mentioning the news again, right up here at the beginning, so everyone (especially the less-careful update skimmers) will know about them.

First up, the new Intro to Dancing Rabbit video is out! Please check it out and share it with your friends if you like it as much as we do! Rae and Illly did amazing work on it, and lots of Rabbits and friends participated in the making of it, so you’ll find a lot of friendly faces telling you a little about what we do here. There are also lots of great shots of the Village in the background.

I had a good time filming the little snippet I did, saying “We also do a lot of things very differently here” many times in many ways. (Yes, that was a subtle hint to allow readers to play “spot the Tereza” in the video…) ((If you already know what I look like — yes, I’m talking about you, Mom! — no cheating by fast forwarding ’til you see me in the preview!)) I appreciate how patient Rae and Illly were with my nervousness (and the loud beeping and vroooming trucks that were making deliveries that day).

OK, enough about my one line of soon-to-be-superstardom, there’s other important news to share! Yes, the dates many of you have been waiting for are up on our website! If you want to take part in Dancing Rabbit’s 2015 Visitor Program check out the link and get in touch— this year’s dates are at the bottom of the page. We hope to see many of you here in 2015, and who knows? Perhaps we’ll be welcoming some of you as new Rabbits sometime down the road…

Now, without further ado, on to the week’s happenings…

Tony was here! Since he’s been on sabbatical in California, most of us have only been in touch with him via email, but this week he was here for a visit. He had hangout time with friends, a few meetings (it’s Dancing Rabbit— of course he had meetings!), and hosted a party Friday night at Skyhouse, during which we played an old DR favorite game called “Essence.”

I’d never heard of it before I moved here, so in case you haven’t either, here’s how to play. Get some friends together, and choose one person to leave the room.  The remaining players choose one among them to be the person to be guessed. The room-leaver then returns, and proceeds to ask questions to try to guess who was chosen. The questions are along the lines of: “If this person was an animal, what animal would they be?”  “What garden tool would they be?” and so on.

The trick in answering is that you aren’t going for what the person looks like, or what they themselves like, but what their “essence” is. You can tailor your questions to the person you’re asking if you want (ask Bear about tools, me about science fiction authors, etc.), and if you want you can ask many people the same question to get different perspectives. Of course it’s highly subjective, and can be quite hilarious, and really tough to guess correctly.

The answers (usually) seem obvious if you know who it is, but if you don’t, well, it’s clear folks can have wildly differing opinions of this kind of thing. (You can vary the rules about how many questions can be asked and guesses made, so feel free to base those on your players.) When the person is guessed, they are then the next one to leave the room, if they want to.

Some of my favorite questions during the game that night included: garden vegetable, DR committee, type of cheese, musical instrument, pizza topping, folksinger, profession, and human-powered vehicle. Answers (not to those questions, obviously) included: rat terrier, a yellow carpet with brown spots, Reiki, a black van, soccer, and Louis L’amour. Fun!

In other entertainment news, there were quite a few movies this week. There were showings of At World’s End, The Empire Strikes Back, and Master and Commander. I only made it to the first of those, a quirky British comedy/drama that I won’t even attempt to summarize for you, but I also went to Kirksville with Sara, Nathan, Katherine, and Nik to see Into the Woods. It was fun to go off farm for a bit and watch something on the big screen, though I go so infrequently I’m always surprised by how loud the sound is, and the number of ads!

Last weekend Kurt, Alline, Sara and I went to Judy and Jim Sharp’s wedding reception in Memphis and really enjoyed it. (Sara was particularly happy to have gluten-free cake!) The couple also came to Pizza Night on Thursday, so some of us got to have longer conversations than were possible at a reception. Sending them more congratulations here!

A new women’s circle began this week, and from what I hear went very well. The plan is to meet weekly in the winter while many folks’ lives are slower, and to meet less frequently when things get busier. I hope to make it to this week’s circle to check it out myself…

We’re also learning things at the ecovillage. This week’s tea and conversation focused on the question of how we can stay cutting edge eco-wise, and I heard it was an interesting, and occasionally heated, discussion. Sounds like one of the issues is that a lot of what makes us cutting edge isn’t very compatible with mainstream culture, for example the very high level of sharing most of us do here.

I’m not sure if anyone’s mentioned Italian class in these updates yet. Erica, who visited from Italy last summer and is now at DR on the weekends, is patiently teaching a group of us Italian. So far there have been several classes and we’ve learned a lot! I missed the most recent class, but she gave me a quick catch-up lesson over dinner Sunday night. We learned numbers up to one hundred and some pronunciation rules. I hope I can still remember them next Saturday…

This week also saw the first meeting of a new anti-racism study group. Trish from Sandhill organized it, inviting some friends of hers from St. Louis to the first meeting. They’ve been doing anti-racism work for a while, and I really appreciate their coming to help us get a good start to the group. It promises to be an intense and powerful experience.

Wishing warmth to all of you in the week to come!

•                  •                 •

Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage is an intentional community and nonprofit outside Rutledge, in northeast Missouri, focused on demonstrating sustainable living possibilities. Find out more about us by visiting our website, reading our blog, or emailing us.

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