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OCTOBER 2019
#39
 
The First Senior Cohousing Community in Port Townsend, WA
 
Meet your newsletter team  
Seen here at their regular monthly meeting, the team gambles that their newsletter will be read and respected throughout the land.
(Newbie chores by Kate; Nonsense limits by Cheron; Costumes by PamC; Art direction by Jim; Cigars by Cindy; General oversight by Araya; Poker guidance tips by Jack)
Croquet Anyone?
Or Another Way of Seeing Cooperation
 
“You’re putting the next wicket WHERE?” some said, “but, but, but that’s not how you do it”. Little did they realize that when Janet and Pam set up the croquet course, this wasn’t just your everyday lawn game. This was CROSS COUNTRY CROQUET!  Down the slope, up the slope, across and down the sidewalk, a few extra strokes here and there, over Nancy’s lawn drain, around the tree, over the ‘rocky rough’ up, around the corner and wall – ah, it is finished! A few people cried foul when we started moving the wickets to the advantage of the balls, yet in CCC there is no such thing as ‘cheating,’ everything (well, almost) is fair.  Isn’t it better to see it as an innovative way to cooperate and assist each other to reach our goals?  And one of those goals always being a whole lot of fun and lots of laughter. Yes, we are indeed just a few hooligans with mulligans here at Quimper Village. 
     Next time, we’ll get out the big mallets and square balls like they do in the Methow Valley, and there will be no doubt in anyone’s mind of what it’s all about.       -PamC
In the above photo, Grace, Araya and PamC show their incredible
enthusiasm for the game.

No cheating allowed!!
 

Mark your Calendars for the

2019 GREAT WASHINGTON SHAKE OUT

EATHQUAKE DRILL

This year it’s on October 17th at 10:17 am. 

Drop, Cover and Hold in place.

*We will do a Walkie-Talkie drill here at Quimper Village at 10:25 am that day for all designated pod communicators. You might want to practice getting batteries in fast and look over protocol before then.

*Also available are some workshops you might want to attend during the month of October:

NPREP (Neighborhood Preparedness in Emergency Planning) Training Team, along with friends at the Quimper Grange #720 are co-hosting a fall series in Emergency Preparedness. Sessions are a-la-carte; attend one, more than one or all of them. 

Location: Quimper Grange
Corona Street in Port Townsend
1:30 - 3:30 pm each week.

October 2: Communications – hands-on training on setting up and using FRS radios. In-depth discussion on HAM radios and communications post-disaster.

October 16: Preservation of papers – Six P’s: People Pets, Pills, Photos, Papers, Privacy: Find out what documents you need for reference/assistance post disaster, extra medications; important papers, how to preserve and encrypt them.

October 23: Personal Safety – How to safely plan for your own and your home’s safety, learning what your options are.

October 30: How to store/treat water, practice safe sanitation and proper use of propane and generators post disaster.

Stay Safe and Be Prepared… from your Health and Safety Team

Giving Up the Car
     There are a couple of levels of giving up the car. When two people live together and they decide to become a one-car family, maybe just for ecological reasons, it’s not very traumatic. Many of us were raised in one car families. It means giving up some independence, coordinating calendars, and perhaps finding supplemental means of transportation. If an individual living alone decides to, or must, give up their car, that can be more unsettling. 
      The car in America has become a symbol of independence and competency, one of our rites of passage. Many men have been raised to see themselves “in the driver’s seat.” For them it may be a symbol of manliness. Some women see it as a means of freedom and independence. For both, chores such as grocery shopping and medical appointments become more difficult without a car. To arrange an alternate form of transportation can be time-consuming and inconvenient.  
     The car has also been the great leveler. When you get behind the wheel, gender, age, and size are of little importance. A large man and a petite woman become equal when they are driving a vehicle.  
     Many of us have had our own cars since we were teenagers, fifty or sixty, or more years. The driver’s license was an emblem of growing up, becoming an adult. Now, giving up the car can be as a symbol of decline, or regression to dependency, perhaps another rite of passage.
It may be hard on the ego to request a ride from a neighbor. It may be inconvenient to read the route maps and schedules of buses, and to wait at bus stops for their arrival or to haul the groceries home on the bus. It’s not great, but it is what it is. One can only make the best of it. 
     In a cohousing community, giving up the car can encourage reaching out and becoming involved with neighbors at a deeper level. It can also inspire creative new ways to access services, for example having groceries delivered or learning how to best ride the transit system or researching a fold-up cart to bring home groceries on the bus.  
     Accepting what is and working to make it better is the task of one who must give up the car. For those who give it up voluntarily, it can be a source of pride.                                                                                                  -Jim

Bees Wrap Rap

How to live greener on this fine planet of ours? I discovered an alternative to plastic wrap. It was included in my thank you gift for a donation to the Environmental Working Group (EWG), a nonprofit helping us lead healthier lives in a healthier environment. The packaging declares it “sustainable food storage, seal with the warmth of your hands.” It inspired this bit of rap.


It’s the BEES (W)RAP!

Plastic, plastic everywhere
On our food, our take-home dish
It’s in our hair, in our fish

Drastic plastic!

What can we do about it?
Need something reusable
Washable, compostable

It’s the Bees (W)RAP!

A little warmth from your hands
Cover a cheese, cover bread 
Shapes itself to a bowl

Good for your soul!

That Bees Wrap lasts a year
With lovely scent of honey
For me, it’s the smart money!

It’s the Bees (W)RAP!                                                  -Kate

Irrigation Irritation 

Here we are in the Pacific Northwest, land of reputed constant rainfall, and we have to irrigate. Just our luck to be in the rain shadow. Just twenty-some-odd inches of rain a year. And about zero in the hottest months of late spring and summer. So we have to irrigate. There goes the water bill.

Bummer.

OK, so thousands of dollars of new plants packed into pit-run, sand and a sprinkle of something almost like soil. No pressure here, folks. Nope, we’ll just irrigate. First, the plants are in before the irrigation is ready, so we hand water. Stand there with a hose until your arm falls off. That, as you know, is wasteful and unscientific and just plain stupid. Never water until your arm falls off. Just don’t, OK? Then you either have too much water or not enough. And your arm just fell off. And someone yells at you for wasting water. Can’t win. 

OK, so this drip system is supposed to keep the whole garden watered just under the surface. It’s on a timer. Easy-peasy, right? Wrong. The timer is on some other calendar - maybe Martian. The pressure is a moody beast from the underworld. Precious plants at the end of the run refuse to thrive, while the ones first in line practically drown themselves. The real winners are the weeds. You can see exactly where the drip line is: weed…  weed… weed. Big fat juicy healthy weeds. While our precious plants suffer. And it lies heavy on your conscience. Bummer.

Next thing, the little tubes and emitters. Fine, each plant gets its own dripper thing. But our stalwart irrigation crew practically break off their fingers fitting the things. Then they tuck the tube thingies in around the plants - with broken fingers and arms falling off. And, surprise! the precious plants at the end of the line still dry up. Depressed yet? Well you should be.

 So, the engineers come in and re-engineer the whole pressure differential, or whatever it is, and you think you’re good. Finally. Everything is theoretically all balanced and perfect and wonderful. Now the test. All ready to check out the system and what happens? What could possibly happen now you wonder? Just when you think you’ve got it all together….it starts raining. Rain! How dare it. See what I mean? You just can’t win.    -Cindy

In addition to watering concerns, the grass needs to be aerated, so we called out the person with the most effectively-sized feet. Aeration involves perforating the soil with small holes to allow air, water and nutrients to penetrate the grass roots. This helps the roots grow deeply and produce a stronger, more vigorous lawn. The main reason for aerating is to alleviate soil compaction. John donned his special cleats and walked around our grassed areas.
Farming Quimper Village

 
     ‘Admiralty Inlet,’ where the Strait of Juan de Fuca meets Puget Sound, has fast tides, dangerous to small boats. Salish Sea Indian canoe pullers often decided it was safer and easier to portage around the choke point, carrying their boats across the low and narrow neck of Quimper Peninsula. Burning and clearing created a prairie passage. In 2016 several acres remained.   
      Quimper Village bought 6 acres right in the middle of the old portage track. The seller and our PUD required that we keep approximately two acres as contiguous open space, so we put the houses and garages in the middle. Our east side open space abuts what’s still a hay field. Deer graze in the hay field until late evening, then wander through our yards eating tasty flowers and leaves for dessert.  
       In our ‘prairies’ we repaired construction damage and sprayed topsoil containing meadow grass seed. The almost bare (and weedy) areas sprouted tall grasses, various wildflowers – and more weeds, especially lots of thistle. Then the rain stopped for nearly four months.   
       QV now owns a John Deere garden tractor/mower and trailer, a heavy-duty “weed whacker” and both harness-mounted and light string trimmers, assorted shovels, rakes, clippers, diggers . . .  We use them too, some of us more than others as we are able. We have spent uncounted hours and carefully-counted dollars setting up drip irrigation lines and doing hand watering. The State of Washington tells us nasty thistles require removal, so we have clipped, dug and precisely sprayed.   
       The meadow looked pretty good as Fall arrived, showing real progress in the first full summer. But about those deer . . .   
       “Deer-resistant” trees are apparently viewed as appetizers by deer, or perhaps young deer have to taste everything to find out what’s deer resistant and what isn’t. Some young trees were tasted to death. Wire and plastic cages now surround nearly all specimen and fruit trees – not the most attractive solution but in line with the QV Rule: good enough for now, safe enough to try. 
       This Fall we ate apples from the reviving old apple tree, admired wildflowers, sprayed more thistles, watered trees and began putting plants to bed with mulch. Wait till next year!                                  -Jack
Newsletter Team: JimD, Araya, Cindy, PamC, Jack, Kate and Cheron
Additional photos: Nancy, Betty, Mena - thanks
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QVNewsTeam@gmail.com
3105 Sage Lane
Port Townsend, WA 98368

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Quimper Village · 3107 Sage Lane · Port Townsend, WA 98368 · USA

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