Saturday, January 31, 2009

Living the Good Life... Tassie sounds pretty good right now!

Ugh. After all this heat, I feel like I should follow Linda Cockburn to chilly Tasmania, where the temperature today and for the rest of the week is exactly where I like it - low to mid 20s, mainly fine but with a shower or two over the week *sigh* Things outside in Melbourne are much cooler, but my apartment is still coming down off a boiling-point high, and no amount of coaxing through open windows and fans will convince it to cool it down before it's good and ready :)

Having said that, my easiyo yoghurt maker arrived today (eep! I'll be trying that out soon!), I spent a bit of time with some great friends this morning, and I have just finished sitting in front of a fan for the last half hour while sipping soda water and cordial and reading the last of Living the Good Life by Linda Cockburn. SO inspiring! I spoke to Ma tonight and she's reading Animal Vegetable Miracle and loves it already, one chapter in - I feel like throwing a big thankyou out to people like Cockburn and Kingsolver for going through things like that and writing about them. It makes it so much easier to be motivated to change the little things along the way when you know that someone else out there made changes that were far more drastic and lifechanging, and lived to tell the tale.

OK, what was it that I loved about Living the Good Life? I think it was honestly written, with all the problems and lapses (which were, however, surpisingly few considering!) included. Linda and Trev get along well but there are some real moments of tension - it's clear that they are very different people, and this means they deal quite differently with the six month challenge. It didn't feel like Linda and Trev had a really easy time of it, and that was with a few years to prepare and make changes that would help them during their experiment. However, they stick at it, and at many times you can sense how 'together' their family seems as they travel along their journey. They survive it as a family.

There were some truly hilarious moments in the book, many of them involving the goat, Possum, who sometimes seems like too much trouble, but provides the family with milk (and therefore cheese, too). Their son, Caleb, also comes across as a funny, witty, lively, child that gets a lot out of the changes that this couple made to their lives. I was really touched by the close relationship between Linda and Caleb - the decision to let him home school because he asks to, the way they play games together, the way she bends the rules to buys him chocolate from the shops for easter so that his fantasy isn't ruined... I felt like they were good people, very normal, doing the best they could - and succeeding - at drastically changing their lives. It came across as difficult, but very achievable and very rewarding.

Ooh I have just stumbled upon Linda's blog, something else to read through and be inspired by!

I also came across a segment they did on 'Today Tonight' (not my favourite program, but I'm glad that the people who do like it got to hear about Linda and Trev) that was up on youtube. Cool.

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