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So far on this trip I have petted three dogs over the age of ten, and four cats whose age I do not know. I have met three children of friends, and seen three friends whose total elapsed time since the last time I saw them was more than 36 years, though understandably, we lose count.

For the last three days I have been off the grid, solar-powered, organic eggs, seasalt collecting (failed, sadly), berry picking, living in a house made of straw and mud and connecting with an old friend and many, many goats, one of whom I heard yipe today as he unwittingly touched the electric fence, poor thing. There was internet, but I mostly opted out of it. I read two books the beach, (which apparently was also a movie, but how would I know, since I live in a cave,) and Throwim Way Leg in which I learned a whole lot about tree marsupials and a little about Papua New Guinea and Irian Jaya. Both of these books I gave away, one to a cafe owner named Jody in Martinez, California who made fun of me for taking a picture of my bagel, but in a good-natured way, and one to the community at which I stayed, which received me well and took me to a creek where I could swim and watch damselflies and dragonflies and a bunch of other bugs and tadpoles and frogs and the whatsises that they are when they’re neither, but rather something in between.

And now I’m in San Francisco, which was a very slow bus labeled “local” (and was it ever!) that took 3.5 hours to go less than 120 miles, followed by a slightly uphill schlep to this urban hostel with more Dutch speakers than you’d expect and questionably clean chairs set up like we’re waiting for a beauty treatment in a room full of pipes with a black ceiling and really good wifi reception. They call it the library. I call it my office, as I have a bunch of work to do. Somewhat embarrasingly, I also call it almost bedtime, since I’m still on farm schedule, apparently. Also, how is it a place that I used to live can look so unfamiliar? I’ll search out something known tomorrow. If you see me wandering, be sure to stop and say hello.