Q’s from the other day + A’s

☆ March 10, 2016

What do your neighbors think of your Bernie support? You live in a red state.
You know, I haven’t found one Republican rancher willing to trade their BLM pasture leases (for which they pay $1.65/AUM*) for my private pasture leases (for which I pay $20/AUM*). I guess there are a lot of closet socialists in these parts?

*AUM stands for Animal Unit Month. A cow with her calf is one animal unit. So, if you have a $1.65/AUM pasture lease, you pay $1.65 per cow/calf pair per month. For example, 100 cow/calf pairs = $165.00/month. With a $20/AUM pasture lease, you pay $20 per cow/calf pair per month, and 100 cow/calf pairs = $2000/month.

If you could change just one thing, one event, one decision in your life, what would it be, and why?
This gets dicey for me, because to answer that question with any detail, I’d have to talk about another person – and not just talk about them, but talk sh*t about them! Which, as tempting as that is, I don’t do on this blog. I’m saving all such stories for a whopping work of fiction I’ll write at age 80. But I can keep it vague and distill it to the part that has to do with me, which is the only really important part, anyway. I wish I’d trusted my gut about someone and acted immediately on those perceptions, even if it meant detonating a bomb (metaphorically), instead of trying to compensate and make things work nicely. Because it didn’t work, and when the bomb finally went off on its own, I lost a lot in the explosion.

Edited to add: Please don’t try to guess who! Why would I ever answer? I’m erasing guesses in the comment section because guessing is grossing me out! And since I post so little about my life relationships on this blog, guessing is also quite futile.

How/when did you find your love of photography?
End of elementary school or beginning of middle school? My memory is foggy and I don’t know how I “found” it, but once I did, it was true love 4 eva. I remember buying my first camera, a used Canon FTb, at Glazer’s in Seattle when I was a tween, with money saved from allowances and odd jobs. I can still remember the sound of the shutter on that camera.

Do you have an all-time favorite picture of Charlie?
Impossible! I was going back through the blog the other day, and was just so glad that I’ve done this, that I’ve taken pictures this entire time (we’re a month away from nine years!), and that I have this catalogue of memories and moments. So much comes back for me, when I look at our old pictures. I remember so much I’d forgotten. And I remember the surrounding life stuff, too – memories about relationships and work and internal reckoning and life events – simply from looking back at pictures of Charlie.

The one question I have always had is in regards to Charlie. If something happens to him (God forbid) would you raise another coyote pup, or do you find it too restricting?
Acknowledging the impossibility of saying anything absolute, it’s very unlikely I would. A) I didn’t seek out a coyote to raise with Charlie, and wouldn’t seek it out in the future; B) this incredible experience with Charlie is because of Charlie, it’s not something I think about replicating because how can you replicate an individual? That said, I don’t find it too restricting, in fact, I’ve created a whole life from those restrictions – being tied to home for Charlie is what allowed me, mentally, to get Daisy, and the rest is history Farmily. So, if there was a coyote in need… and considering I have the space and understanding…. ok, maybe it will happen ^.^

What is your favorite indulgence now that you are living in a rural area, and what was it 10 years ago?
Acupuncture! My first time was late last fall, in a desperate attempt to feel all-the-way-right after surgery (which had been in February). It did (and continues to do) amazing things for me. And, miraculously, I can have it done here in my rural area – just down the street from the grocery store. Ten years ago, I was broke. Buying cheese was an indulgence.

Do you still have your vespa? If so, do you take it out for a run now and then?
Yes! No… I live on a dirt road, it’s more fun and more comfortable to be on a horse than a Vespa. The Vespa is still very dear to me and lives in my office. I’ve willed it to my niece.


15 Responses to “Q’s from the other day + A’s”

  1. Marlene k
    March 10th, 2016 @ 7:42 am

    Shreve….I have followed you from the very very start..the beginning of it all..actually back from your gluten book and Vespa travel..that far back!!!…
    are you still with him?? Is he part of your life?? You never talk about your cowboy anymore..I may have been out of the loop ..but I sense it may be true..I hope not..but iif so…you are very intuitive and change had to be made fir your growth ! I’m curious because of your one answer here……?? .Marlene in Cambria…

  2. shreve
    March 10th, 2016 @ 7:48 am

    M ~ I couldn’t have gotten through the last two years without Mike ;) “The person” I reference was not a romantic partner. [THIS ANSWER IS SIMPLY TO DEFEND MIKE, NOT TO OPEN COMMENTS UP TO GUESSES!!!]

  3. Aimee
    March 10th, 2016 @ 8:13 am

    Hi there! Long time lurker (I’ve been reading your blog for 6 years!), first time commenter. I’m glad you mentioned Mike, I was wondering about him as well! I’m glad you’re writing more again, I’ve missed hearing your thoughts. Do you updated the “On My Bookshelf” regularly? I’m a huge reader and could use some new recommendations. Thanks!

  4. RG
    March 10th, 2016 @ 8:45 am

    Hi Shreve – I suspect you’re going to be bombarded with questions now that the Q&A doors have been reopened! Here’s mine: while most of us (I’m guessing) drag ourselves to our office/school/retail/whatever jobs every day, you seem to have perfected the art of creating your own “job” out of a Renaissance Woman-type combination of skills – writing, photography, jewelry making, ranching, and running your beef company. Do you have any advice for those of us who yearn to support ourselves through creative self employment?

  5. Catherine
    March 10th, 2016 @ 9:03 am

    [EDIT FROM SHREVE: PLEASE don’t try to guess who! Why would I ever answer? I’m erasing guesses because guessing is grossing me out! And since I post so little about my life relationships on this blog, guessing is also quite futile.]

    Loved Bernie last night ! Our only hope for real change ! That Hilary is a woolf dressed as a Grandma !

  6. Amy
    March 10th, 2016 @ 9:44 am

    My biggest regrets are also from inaction. I find my mistakes made in acting the wrong way much more forgivable because maybe I didn’t fully understand the situation, but I thought I was doing a good thing. But the times I haven’t spoken up, particularly in defense of others and particularly for one stranger’s child once… I will have a hard time ever letting those regrets go.

  7. Patr
    March 10th, 2016 @ 9:45 am

    HI MIKE!!! Glad you are still around. ;) Photography found me at age 6 – our first trip to Colorado and I had a Brownie. I still have and love that little box

  8. shreve
    March 10th, 2016 @ 9:49 am

    A ~ YES. Speaking up has been such a big theme for me recently, all tied together with physically struggling to talk…big stuff. Why is it so hard to say words, especially honest words?

  9. JoDi
    March 10th, 2016 @ 9:55 am

    Thanks for answering our questions! I love that you’re going to pass your Vespa on to your niece. I hope her journey is as inspiring as yours.

  10. Cinda
    March 10th, 2016 @ 11:04 am

    Great questions and answers. And I love your description of looking back at your photos. They are wonderfully inspiring and touching. Would you like to write more about photography and your creative process?

    Have you seen the documentary DVD “Rivers and Tides” about the Scottish sculptor Andy Goldsworthy? And his book Collaborations With Nature?

  11. Sandy G.
    March 10th, 2016 @ 3:14 pm

    Thank you, Shreve. I have grown so fond of you and your blog (life journey) these past nine years. I can’t believe it has been that long since I started following your journey with baby Charlie (curled up to sleep with Eli)! You are a special person, who has enriched my life in so many ways. Again, thank you for sharing. I have had my own ups and downs, health and illnesses, regrets and joys, even hard financial times and better times, and I can so relate to and feel for you in your remarkable life’s journey, which you have so generously shared with us. Go Bernie!

  12. Marlene k
    March 10th, 2016 @ 9:00 pm

    I a apologize if I sounded like I was trying to fish and guess
    It was just a quick thought aund question that just appeared In My mind …I gave it not much thought and asked…I have regrets a lot with my daughter specially ..because I speak quickly what I think without thinking of how it’s perceived and interpreterd .she is a very sensitive Libra nand I often Put my foot in my mouth….being a spontaneous Aries……I regret not having developed a better screening mechanism I’m 59 yrs. old…before I speak especially to family….working on it…it’s on going …

  13. torre
    March 10th, 2016 @ 9:41 pm

    this post makes me smile – i tell all kinds of people about Charlie and the wonderful life he has with you. they melt when i show them the blog pictures.

    hmmmm i too compensate and try to make things work – way longer than i should…. a work in progress

  14. Katie H
    March 12th, 2016 @ 11:06 am

    In the wake of a friendship ending (imploding) last year I suddenly realized that were a lot of aspects of that relationship that I had been uncomfortable with, then I realized that my intuition about this person’s nature and general discomfort with her rules for friendship was actually my gut speaking to me.

    After my armed robbery last year fear took on a much more primal definition for me. I had never feared for my life before in such a huge way, and that fear still plays a role in my life now. And it sucks, but I’m working with it. However- the old fears have really diminished in it’s wake. I’m not as afraid to listen to my gut and be honest about my feelings with someone now. Funny how staring down the barrel of a gun does that to you.

    I wish I had been truer to myself in that friendship, and it would have been more uncomfortable for a while but I think it also would have saved us both a lot of heartache, not to mention we would still be on good terms.

  15. Patricia A. Long
    March 15th, 2016 @ 9:34 am

    Shreve, Thanks for the question and answer blog.
    I am happy to hear that you are a Bernie supporter. I am also! Charlie is so beautiful and as you say quite an individual. I commend you for your love and care of all your family!

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