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June 21st, 2019

Inheritance

With tonight's insomnomnomia, here's a topic I've been contemplating: costumes for the Seattle-to-Portland.

I'm not feeling the pirate regalia for this year.

I might just pin an earth flag to my shoulders, one my parents gave to me.

I also keep thinking about the t-shirt my father used to wear, that said, "We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors; we borrow it from our children."*

Two contexts:

1. With climate change, have we actually entered a period of massive sorrow? I feel like I'm seeing less evidence of fighting over, "It's not real," and a shift towards more glum news stories documenting things changing in rapid, unexpected, and disturbing ways.

2. When I agreed to serve on this rowing club's Board, I inherited the club's history. On the one hand, here's something to be amazed and grateful for: there's a rowing club here, with a boathouse full of boats that we can use for rowing. (I mean, just consider those Texas boats for ten seconds).

On the other hand, being part of leadership means keeping closer tabs on finances, and learning more about the club's financial history. Things inherited: deferred maintenance backlog, a dock reaching the very end of its useable lifespan, some debt. The deferred maintenance backlog is so bad that boats are going out of commission frequently.

-

I would love to be able to turn these pictures around. I keep feeling that feeling, of being handed huge problems and told, "Well, we broke it. Good luck."

My father has given me tools for healing. I have my bicycle, and my own two hands. I have at least some level of patience, and a whole lot of stubborn persistence. He did his best to teach me about financial responsibility.

I hope I can continue to be a source of encouragement for others.

I also keep thinking of one of the Berkeley rowers from the Old Man Double, the one who was unfailing and so persistent in always speaking positively about the incredible qualities of the people around him.

We must carry these things forward.



*Quick oogley-googley search attributes this to Wendell Berry!

This entry was originally posted at https://rebeccmeister.dreamwidth.org/1301847.html. Please comment there using OpenID.

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