The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Black Confession

Black Friday photo from insidesocal.comI have a confession to make.  On Black Friday --- in the polar opposite of voluntary simplicity --- I not only bought something, but I bought something big.

When I quit working for my nonprofit, I had to return the fancy equipment I'd been using --- a zippy laptop, a stunning camera, a swell GPS.  I thought I'd miss the camera the most and had told myself I could splurge and buy one of my own, but luckily before I splurged I went back to my old laptop and realized that it was like returning to using a screwdriver after you've been building houses with a power drill.  I had gotten used to being able to manipulate 2.4 MB photos with ease or format big fancy documents.  Back on my old computer, not only was the broken hinge not as repairable as I'd initially thought, but those large manipulations would take 15 minutes of painful effort, the mouse lagging behind where I pointed it as the computer worked all out and still barely managed.

And so I told myself "if you can find a zippy laptop for under $500 you can get it", thinking all the while that the budget was too low and there was no way I'd find something zippy enough to tempt me so cheap.  But then on Black Friday I went online and found a 15% off sale at Lenovo along with free shipping --- and got a zippy laptop for under $500.

When the computer arrived yesterday, the creek was way up and the footbridge icy and lopsided, but I crawled across (literally), pushing the laptop box in front of me --- my version of risking life and limb for shopping.  Next week, Joey will set it up with Linux (at which point I will begin to love it --- right now it's running windows and I can't seem to force myself to touch it.)  And that is my confession --- we all fall short of the glory.  But at least I didn't fall in the creek!

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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