And forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair. ~ Kahlil Gibran

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Opposites Attract

Really, they do. Mr. Barefoot and I have been (as you all know) looking for a house. I don't think anything in the world could have highlighted our differences more effectively.

Since deciding to take the plunge, I have been making lists and charts of what I would be willing to settle for, how much I feel we can afford, what our prospective budget will be, average lot sizes in different areas of our town and how that would affect my gardens and growing potential, etc. I am a little bit OCD about the whole thing, actually.

Mr. Barefoot? Well, he isn't doing all that. He keeps looking for that house that....I don't really know what he is looking for. I just know that he keeps LOOKING.

Here I have been online for quite a bit of the day researching espalier techniques and fruit tree varieties that could be grown in my (zone 3 or 4, depending on who you ask) climate. It's a little early for that, seeing as we haven't even found a place, but a girls gotta dream, right? I had been thinking that I could just take some of the young plum, apple, and crab apple shoots from my folks' place and espalier them wherever our new yard will be. I think that would work for the plums, and maybe for the apple, but I think the crab is too big.

I do think it will be a potentially awesome deal, though. I can get apples and plums from my folks, and then my honorary uncle has said that I can come and get raspberries, blackberries, and hazelnuts from his place. I don't know if I will get the hazelnuts, but raspberries and blackberries? Heck yeah!

That makes me think about how dang lucky I am. Really. Even if I stayed here and continued to garden at my folks' place I would have just about everything a gal could need. We are one mile from the local river, have really productive gardens, fruit trees, a stretch of woods that occasionally sprouts up some tasty mushrooms, and the knowledge of where in the area there are good things to "forage".

Heck, the whole world could grind to a stop tomorrow, and I think we would get through all right.

But all that is beside the point.

The point is that while I am spending all my time making lists and looking at every penny spent with a microscope to ensure that it really does need to be spent, Mr. Barefoot is just bopping along like always. He is so blissfully unconcerned about the environmental impact he has. He is cheerfully ignorant of the concept of "simple living", of reducing one's wants and becoming happy with what one has. while I dream of taking Voluntary Simplicity, YMOYL, and Possum Living to heart, he is dreaming of new SUVs, golf course lawns, and impressing his friends with whatever new toy is cool.

Like I said, opposites attract.


Wendy said...

Ugh! Sounds too painfully familiar. Deus Ex Machina was just like Mr. Barefoot. I don't know what changed, exactly ... maybe my constant barage of eco-info, all of the magazines, all of the carefully placed literature and Internet articles staring at him while he sat on the toilet. I left a copy of Possum Living in the bathroom, and he actually read it, although he scoffed ... outwardly ... and said Dolly is a nutcase.

Really, I think what changed was me, and when he started to take note that I really HAD changed, he started paying attention to WHAT I had changed, and he started to seem as if he believed in the changes I was making.

He's still not willing to use cloth wipes in lieu of toilet tissue, and I haven't convinced him to install a composting toilet, but I have to give him credit for a lot of things he's accepted and a lot of changes he's made.

Anyway, be patient and be consistent, and "be the change." It's frustrating and it seems to take forever (it's taken me almost two years to see this progress), but once it happens, it's like rolling a snowball down hill. He'll get such a momentum going that you'll have a hard time keeping up :).

Kati said...

Dang.... Sounds like we really wouldn't want to get our hubbies together, as much as they probably really would not appreciate US meeting up IRL. *wink* That's precisely how my hubby thinks. I'm gradually wearing him down, but it's very gradual. The good part, for me, is that the hubby is somewhat concerned about the financial aspect of the hard-times coming. (That said, he also doesn't think the hard times are going to last, it IS after all, "just a short recession" like the president is just barely starting to "admit" to.... That's the party line, and that's what the hubby believes.)

So, in talking about reroofing the house in a couple of years, I'm looking at metal roofing (the slate-slab look) because of it's durability. He's thinking how much longer that'll last than tar-paper shingles. He's looking at it for the "oh this will last 30 years instead of 15, so I won't have to spend that much $$ again as soon." I'm looking at it for the "oh, it'll last 30 years instead of 15, so we'll be using less resources and will hopefully be a little easier on the earth in the long run."

But, at the same time... Where I'm thinking that now that we're starting to show some "leftover" in our bank account every month, that means we can put some in savings.... My hubby's thinking that it means maybe we can afford a snow machine or 4-wheeler finally. I'm thinking wood floors for the house, he's thinking laminate regardless of the fact that it won't hold up as well or last as long, and will go down more quickly. I'm thinking small garden in the front yard. He's thinking golf-course quality lawn, even as it sucks down the water.

*sigh* Yep. Opposites attract. At the same time though, it results in the occasional wonderings about justifiable homicide or pleas of insanity. *wink*