Volunteer Activist by Day and by Night

On Monday evening there was an interesting meeting in my town, about a small wooded piece near a local pond that is under threat of the bulldozer and development. I wanted to go and hear what it was all about, meet the people organizing against it happening. Hear the arguments on the other side…

But I had spent most of the weekend “on the beat”: Moving Planet all day Saturday, on Sunday a presentation about Transition to my town’s First Parish Green Sanctuary Committee (which, I believe, I am now a member of), putting together a press release about the previous day, picking up the sandwich boards from the intersections, setting up some of our coming events, and in the late afternoon getting my neighborhood’s block party going.

So I stayed home, cooked a meal and had dinner with my family. We read books together and I took Amie to sleep. Then I read my novel (scfi-fi, these days, total escapism!).

I am now doing this kind of work, “volunteer activism,” pretty much full-time.  I email, maintain two websites, design fliers, write article, schedule talks and meetings, prepare presentations, and plot world domination plan events during the day, when Amie is at school and while she reads or does homework. The events, talks, presentations and meetings themselves happen in the evenings and over the weekends. That’s because that’s when people are “off work” and can come. This means I have very little down time anymore.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining! I’m saying, like I often do when I describe Transition, that it takes the whole person: heart, hands, and head. Weekdays and weekends. On and off. I think that’s right, I think that’s how it should be. I live what I preach. I am moved by the cause day and night. I think I am lucky, that I don’t have to tear myself in two, that I carry my passion around with me at all times, at home and “on the beat”.

I’m still going strong and I’ve got my buddies looking out for me, making sure I don’t burn out. So one of them went to the meeting instead. And I could stay home, and take care of myself and my family.

I got a report in the morning.

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  1. Yep, transitioning takes a lot of energy and time but I always feel filled up and I struggle with a money value attached to everything these days anyway so i like to support the gift economy and if I’m after some reciprocity I do the work through the timebank.
    Kia kaha – as i wrote at sometime in my personal blog, there is no “self” sufficiency but a combination of personal food production, relocalising our food security and community resilience. Have you seen the movie “The Economics of Happiness?”

  2. I like your term “volunteer activism” and the part about “living what you preach”. You are inspiring me and a growing community of like minded people. Think of the play Wen’s articles are getting… transition has been some of the air under those wings. We’re likely changing life-long habits at those school lunches with green team.
    It’s a long road, share the load more often.

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