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Luna Bliss

The Allure Of Campers & Camping - A Slightly Philosophical Thread

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3 minutes ago, Luna Bliss said:

For me, vast expanses give  a sense of how small I am in the scheme of things, and  I feel more distant from the way I was conceiving myself.

Standing in the middle of a large crowd also gives me a sense of how small I am in the scheme of things. I also feel more distant, though in a different way than when contemplating an empty expanse. In the latter, I can imagine it's all mine.

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10 minutes ago, Madelaine McMasters said:

In the latter, I can imagine it's all mine.

Well, we are stardust, we are golden, and we've got to...........lol

Canadian!

 

Edited by Luna Bliss
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6 minutes ago, Scylla Rhiadra said:

Canada's attitude to the history of our expansion westward has changed

I listened to the Glen Gould movie referenced on the other thread, but it was difficult for me to get a sense of the History -- probably because vast amounts of background were missing -- what you've explained makes more sense.

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6 minutes ago, Luna Bliss said:

I listened to the Glen Gould movie referenced on the other thread, but it was difficult for me to get a sense of the History -- probably because vast amounts of background were missing -- what you've explained makes more sense.

What I think you get from the Glen Gould movie -- and this is pretty typically Canadian, probably -- is a sense that Canadians, or at least non-indigenous Canadians, always feel a little overwhelmed by our landscapes in the west and north. We are a relatively small nation (under 40 million) spread across a really huge expanse of land, and mostly concentrated within 100 kms or so of the US border. So, we are, almost literally, overwhelmed by the expanse of space. A little like what Maddy describes, actually. And there is, I think anyway, always a bit of an undercurrent of feeling intimidated by it.

My perception -- and I'm certainly open to correction on this -- is that in the US, new territories were something to be conquered, to be wrestled into submission, and to be "filled" with people. That's very different from the Canadian relationship to our land.

Edited by Scylla Rhiadra
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1 hour ago, Scylla Rhiadra said:

The Red Green Show is hilarious. But it's also kind of odd, in some ways, because it's really an affectionate parody, written by and for urban folk like myself, of life in small town Ontario. It's full of funned-up cliches about "being Canadian," but, again, in the context of a particular cultural milieu. In one way, it's a prime example of the Canadian talent for making gentle fun of ourselves (cf. Bob and Doug Mackenzie), but it's also, at least maybe, a sort of condescending portrait of non-urban Canadians, as viewed from the perspective of the so-called "urban elites" (who are the main demographic, I suspect, of the CBC).

BUT . . . as I say, it is affectionate. I don't know how those who live in the small towns of Ontario that it is sort of ridiculing feel about it, but mostly we (Canadians) are pretty slow to take offense. I suspect that they find it funny too, even as they recognize themselves in it?

I do remember, btw, The Red Fisher Show, which is one of the things that Red Green is parodying. It was hilariously awful. If you like Red Green, it's probably worth dragging up an episode Red Fisher: it's unintentional self-parody!

I know plenty of rural folks. Those who have seen Red Green love it and I don't think they feel ridiculed by it. There's a chain of farm/truck/home stores in the Midwest called Farm & Fleet. In one store, they sell diapers and baby formula, children clothing, toys, school supplies, toiletries, bib overalls, sundresses, undies, camo lingerie, party supplies, packaged foods, furniture, appliances, tools, tractor and auto parts, guns, deer musk, frozen bull semen, building materials... I could go on. They also have a bridal registry, but no condoms. They are the rural Midwest.

I suppose one could argue that Country Music isn't the work of country people, but it sure speaks to them. Mac recently attended an impromptu party in which people who'd never met gathered in the middle of a lake to enjoy each other's company. He was thrown a beer by another boat the moment he was within striking distance. Here's the song someone was blasting from the boombox on their pontoon boat...

Who's ridiculing who here?

Edited by Madelaine McMasters
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4 minutes ago, Scylla Rhiadra said:

And there is, I think anyway, always a bit of an undercurrent of feeling intimidated by it.

My perception -- and I'm certainly open to correction on this -- is that in the US, new territories were something to be conquered, to be wrestled into submission, and to be "filled" with people. That's very different from the Canadian relationship to our land.

I see that clearly now, yes the vastness is HUGE up there.

I'm always willing to trash the U.S. -- I'm so sick of what's going on here. If you say Canada has had a better relationship with nature and Natives I'll take it!   lol

A little voice says, however, that once anyone has success in conquering it can be like the spread of a virus -- very hard to stop it. So were the Canadians actually 'better', or were they simply unable to continue on with Western man's objectives to conquer nature and make nature submit to man, vs realizing man is a part of nature and not all that great in the scheme of things.

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1 minute ago, Luna Bliss said:

So were the Canadians actually 'better', or were they simply unable to continue on with Western man's objectives to conquer nature and make nature submit to man, vs realizing man is a part of nature and not all that great in the scheme of things.

Oh, sorry! I did not mean to convey the sense that Canadians were "better" at any of this. Just different.

As I said, our national myths like to convey the idea that our growth was, in important ways, more peaceful than that of the US -- and there is some truth to that. But those myths also mask a whole lot of violence.

In the other thread, I made mention of the establishment of residential schools, beginning in the last decade of the 19th century, and continuing well into the middle of the 20th. These were establishments that "catered" to First Nations children forcibly taken from their parents, given new "European" names, forbidden from speaking their native tongues, and generally kept in horrendous conditions that resulted in the death of thousands of them. It was an outright attempt to extinguish indigenous identity in Canada, and it was by any definition cultural genocide, verging in places on murder by neglect. We're only now coming to terms with the horrendous damage we caused, both to the individuals involved, and to the cultures we tried to annihilate: a "Truth and Reconciliation" commission that reported on it a few years ago has laid out some of the necessary groundwork, and agonizingly small and inadequate steps have been taken to put that into effect. There is nothing "better" about that, in any sense. It's the most shameful chapter in a history that hides a great many shameful moments.

At the same time, Canada's historic dependence upon the exploitation of natural resources has led to some pretty horrific environmental damage. Our federal government's recent decision to take control of and build a huge oil pipeline from the Alberta tar sands, over some very loud protests from the First Nations communities and any one else who cares about the environment, is proof that we haven't wrestled that demon to the ground either.

As for the potshots at those damned Yankees that punctuate our history books, that's an inevitable corollary of being a small nation trying to define, and differentiate itself in the shadow of a much larger one, one that threatens (purposefully or not) to overwhelm us all the time.

Understanding the myths that underwrite a nation's view of itself can lend really useful insights into its culture and workings. But it's important to remember that they are just that: myths.

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13 minutes ago, Luna Bliss said:
21 minutes ago, Scylla Rhiadra said:

And there is, I think anyway, always a bit of an undercurrent of feeling intimidated by it.

My perception -- and I'm certainly open to correction on this -- is that in the US, new territories were something to be conquered, to be wrestled into submission, and to be "filled" with people. That's very different from the Canadian relationship to our land.

I see that clearly now, yes the vastness is HUGE up there.

I'm always willing to trash the U.S. -- I'm so sick of what's going on here. If you say Canada has had a better relationship with nature and Natives I'll take it!   lol

A little voice says, however, that once anyone has success in conquering it can be like the spread of a virus -- very hard to stop it. So were the Canadians actually 'better', or were they simply unable to continue on with Western man's objectives to conquer nature and make nature submit to man, vs realizing man is a part of nature and not all that great in the scheme of things.

Much of Canada, like Alaska, IS intimidating. It's constantly trying to kill you. That's one reason the Northwest Territories aren't teeming with Canadamins.

...swoons.

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3 minutes ago, Madelaine McMasters said:

Much of Canada, like Alaska, IS intimidating. It's constantly trying to kill you. That's one reason the Northwest Territories aren't teeming with Canadamins.

...swoons.

I know, that's such an annoying damm thing about life -- it's always trying to kill us    ;0

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7 minutes ago, Scylla Rhiadra said:

Oh, sorry! I did not mean to convey the sense that Canadians were "better" at any of this. Just different.

I believe some cultures are better.  I love Native American consciousness (some tribes) where 'balance' was/is valued -- staying within one's means.  An ability to accept death rather than hoard resources as a misguided attempt to prevent it. I don't know if Canadian culture (on average) was or is better in this regard.

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3 hours ago, Madelaine McMasters said:

Who's ridiculing who here?

That's pretty hilarious. Who needs Red Green after all?

It's also pretty familiar looking. There's a Canadian version of this, associated with summer cottages: you probably wouldn't notice much difference, except that the beer would be better (don't get a Canadian started on the subject of US beer . . .), and the music maybe a little different at times (because, Shania Twain notwithstanding, Anglo Canadian country music is a bit more influenced by English, Irish, and Scottish folk music).

Edited by Scylla Rhiadra

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14 minutes ago, Luna Bliss said:

I believe some cultures are better.

I guess, maybe? I don't know how you'd measure that, though. Every culture brings its own "good things" to the table, but these inevitably mean trade offs of some sort.

So, for instance, while I am by no definition a "patriotic" Canadian, I am happy being Canadian, and wouldn't move to the US on a bet -- because the particular things that *I* value are weighted a bit more heavily here (e.g., public healthcare, gun control, social services, etc.). But I'm very aware that there are ways in which US culture is "better." You've created a culture there that is, for instance, much more "creative" and innovative than ours.

I think it's often a question of how you weight the criteria.

18 minutes ago, Luna Bliss said:

I love Native American consciousness (some tribes) where 'balance' was/is valued -- staying within one's means.  An ability to accept death rather than hoard resources as a misguided attempt to prevent it.

I'll agree that there is much to be admired in First Nations cultures, and a great deal that we can learn from them. But I'm also leery of romanticizing them into a sort of 21st century version of the old "Noble Savage" myth. Indigenous cultures featured, historically, their own fair share of violence and inequality; the part of Ontario I live was the home, before about 1650, of the so-called "Neutral Confederacy," a first nation that was literally annihilated by war with the Iroquois nations. Whatever their culture, people are pretty much always people, and we all share that tendency towards violence and injustice.

On the whole (and I'm not sure I'm really disagreeing with you on this), I think we should look to see what all cultures have to offer, and try to find ways to reconcile and integrate the best of what each has created.

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45 minutes ago, Madelaine McMasters said:

Much of Canada, like Alaska, IS intimidating. It's constantly trying to kill you. 

I was going to make this point but there it is.  We live in a country where we can die simply by going outside.

Canada is so much rock.  It's not the easiest land to settle, and the winters are rough, even at its most southerly points.  There is not much choice beyond electing to respect the climate and its whims.  

Canada's history politically is charged; there have been liberal-minded Federal leaders with a view to trying to make reparations with First Nations communities; there have been conservative-minded leaders more interested in selling our natural resources.  

Camper parks, mobile home parks, trailer parks... there are all kinds of villages supporting this living in Canada and it seems to me that it ought to be the way of the future.  "Owning" land becomes such an outdated concept and environmentally disastrous as the population increases. But moving across the land with ritualized mobility and migratory structure seems to make so much more sense.  Something we can also learn from our First Nations communities and their ancestral traditions.

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As much as I truly love what's going on in Bellisseria, I haven't been moved to upgrade to Premium yet.  That's a puzzling reaction, as I think about it, but I think I understand better now that the camping trailers have appeared.  I love being outdoors.  Decorating indoors has never held much appeal for me, because indoors is just a place for sleeping and eating.  When I take RL vacations in RL, I head for the countryside (Scotland, Croatia, the Canadian maritimes, Iceland ... ).  When I'm at home, I look forward to taking a long walk in the woods or around a nearby lake.

I'm finding great joy in wandering around Bellisseria and seeing the landscape, just as I do in RL. The camping regions are stunning, the best I have seen yet!  If I were exploring a RL place like this, even at my advanced age, I would grab a tent and a sleeping bag and hike off into the hills.  The trailers are wonderful.  I just don't want to live in one.  I get more than enough enjoyment by visiting.  😊

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8 hours ago, Madelaine McMasters said:

In one store, they sell diapers and baby formula, children clothing, toys, school supplies, toiletries, bib overalls, sundresses, undies, camo lingerie, party supplies, packaged foods, furniture, appliances, tools, tractor and auto parts, guns, deer musk, frozen bull semen, building materials... I could go on. They also have a bridal registry, but no condoms. They are the rural Midwest.

is the same up home where I come from. Shops in the back blocks which have everything, and will get whatever you want if they don't have in stock

a big reason these shops survive, is that the shopkeepers let local people run a store account and settle up monthly. Which because rural income is variable makes it simpler for the locals when baby needs diapers now, equipment needs a part replaced immediately if the crop is to be harvested, dad needs medicating, mum needs ribbons for the hall dance, etc

also as well when a family's income is a bit down for the month, then the shopkeeper will carry the family over to the next month (months even in some cases). The whole rural we are all in this together. Down today, up tomorrow and thank you

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17 hours ago, Gregorian Chant said:

Spider-camping-421x500.jpg

Oh god, that reminds me of this shaman woman I had to endure in a kind of vision quest and shamanic healing I embarked on with her -- spiders walking all over me at night was supposed to be okay because they were daddy-long-legs and didn't bite??  NO!

Talk about 'in touch with nature' -- I'm afraid I just can't go that far.  She had a pet wolf spider that came out each night and sat on the sofa beside her as she read or watched TV.

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On 9/19/2019 at 9:02 PM, Madelaine McMasters said:

I call 'em Can-ada-mins.

How can you not love the society that created this...

...and yes, even Scylla.

i need to try this!Best part."This is a man's car!Sit Up!"too funny!thanks for sharing

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I could write a whole article about how amazing everything is.And how happy i am,.But will be boring for many of you.All i can say is that i am impressed,and i let you guys enjoy the 2 pics i made.Thank you LL for doing this 

Snapshot_001.jpg

Snapshot_002.jpg

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On 9/21/2019 at 9:21 AM, Luna Bliss said:

Oh god, that reminds me of this shaman woman I had to endure in a kind of vision quest and shamanic healing I embarked on with her -- spiders walking all over me at night was supposed to be okay because they were daddy-long-legs and didn't bite??  NO!

Talk about 'in touch with nature' -- I'm afraid I just can't go that far.  She had a pet wolf spider that came out each night and sat on the sofa beside her as she read or watched TV.

I would've tapped out of this mortal coil.  Did she explain the meaning of the spiders in your vision?

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I grew up on two acres of land where my dad had a manufactured home placed for him and I after he adopted me. So, I kind of lived in a camper throughout my childhood and well into my adulthood. For my dad it was the only way he could ever afford to provide a home for him and I that he owned. It was the most amazing experience to call home a place I could get lost in the quiet of soft grassy pastures sheltered by giant trees. It was a place I felt free, safe, secure and protected. I was homeschooled so most of my time was spent in my personal Eden on Earth that my dad had created for me.

We had a huge vegetable and flower garden. He made a huge fish pond and swimming hole. He even put in a private bonfire area in the middle of a small lighted maze of rose bushes he created so we could have s'mores and singalongs during the summer with friends from our church.

I was sick most of the time so never got to go many places, so my dad brought all he could to me. It was a beautiful time in my life I was blessed to have thanks to him. 😊

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3 hours ago, LyricalBookworm said:

It was a beautiful time in my life

That sounds like a lovely way to grow up. As I child I lived at the edge of a small town, with wheat fields extending forever, and I would play all day in those fields, making little passages and 'homes' created by stomping down the wheat grass. I'm not sure the farmers appreciated my endeavors though :(

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12 hours ago, Gregorian Chant said:

I would've tapped out of this mortal coil.  Did she explain the meaning of the spiders in your vision?

lol well I think that spider you posted caused such anxiety I could not explain the experience clearly. These were actual daddy-long-leg spiders crawling on me at night in the bedroom I slept in during the several-days-long shamanic healing/vision quest. Apparently nobody had slept in the bed for a long while, as it was an unused guest bed, and so the spiders had not been encouraged to find a better home as they often do when an area is disturbed frequently. When responding to my freaked-out state caused by spiders crawling on me, the shaman said "oh don't worry, they're daddy-long-legs and they don't bite". That did not reassure! Fortunately, she took mercy on me and found a better sleeping spot.

The overall experience contained many exercises and experiences aside from the spider one however. At the end of my stay I felt much more in touch with life in a deeper way -- we are brainwashed via cultural conditioning to think & believe certain ways, or to think we need more than we do. But much of this 'padding' can be removed so that we have a more direct experience of life, and I think that's what happened to me there.
As applied to RL camping, when we downsize and get rid of the excess provided by modern conveniences we have the opportunity to become aware of what we really need, so that we become more in touch with the essence of our life as opposed to what we pack in around ourselves.

But back to spiders, I'm getting ready to go into VR with my headset and face my fears. In VR, the experiences feel so real, far beyond the more detached experience of SL, and so it will feel like a spider is actually crawling on me. Perhaps I should make sure my heart is healthy so I don't, as you say, tap out of this mortal coil!
The way I'm viewing it, is that it's actually kind of unfair to the spider to have such prejudice against it just because it looks so different from me. In fact, this tribalism where we hate someone who is different from ourselves is the cause of all war and discord. A healthy fear of nature is good, of course, so that we minimize harm, but in my experience people bite far more often than spiders, and for very screwy reasons. 

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On 9/20/2019 at 3:41 PM, Scylla Rhiadra said:

Well, I spent a bit of time last night sneaking through people's backyards in the new(ish) trailer parks . . .

I never stayed in, and indeed don't know that I've ever even visited, a trailer park like this, but the equivalent, I think, in the part of Canada where I grew up and live is the "summer cottage." In my part of the world, those are usually in Muskoka, to the north east of Toronto, or around the shores of Georgian Bay.

My partner's cousin lives near Toronto and he used to have a cottage on Georgian Bay, in Woods Bay close to Mactier.  We went up there to stay one summer and it was absolutely idyllic. A whole week doing nothing but taking the boat out, exploring the "Thousand Islands" and fishing. Oh wait, there was also that party. Somehow only I could go out into the middle of nowhere and end up getting invited to a party of about fifty complete strangers who all treated me and my partner like we were best friends.

Canadians are awesome.

 

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1 hour ago, Luna Bliss said:

lol well I think that spider you posted caused such anxiety I could not explain the experience clearly.

Sorry about that. :(

 

1 hour ago, Luna Bliss said:

These were actual daddy-long-leg spiders crawling on me at night in the bedroom I slept in during the several-days-long shamanic healing/vision quest. Apparently nobody had slept in the bed for a long while, as it was an unused guest bed, and so the spiders had not been encouraged to find a better home as they often do when an area is disturbed frequently. When responding to my freaked-out state caused by spiders crawling on me, the shaman said "oh don't worry, they're daddy-long-legs and they don't bite". That did not reassure! Fortunately, she took mercy on me and found a better sleeping spot.

Oh, I thought your spiritual vision quest was trying to send a message in the form of spiders or something.  Thanks for clarifying. :)

 

1 hour ago, Luna Bliss said:

The overall experience contained many exercises and experiences aside from the spider one however. At the end of my stay I felt much more in touch with life in a deeper way -- we are brainwashed via cultural conditioning to think & believe certain ways, or to think we need more than we do. But much of this 'padding' can be removed so that we have a more direct experience of life, and I think that's what happened to me there.
As applied to RL camping, when we downsize and get rid of the excess provided by modern conveniences we have the opportunity to become aware of what we really need, so that we become more in touch with the essence of our life as opposed to what we pack in around ourselves.

There's something to be said for minimalist living. Capitalism has drilled into people's heads with the idea of "whoever dies with the most stuff wins."  Those who let their material possessions define them tend to lose touch with themselves. People don't realize half the stress comes from spending too much time and money on maintaining their tchotchkes.  I know I get a sense of relief when I chucked the stuff that sat untouched for months off to Goodwill. Less things to worry about cleaning or stub my toe against.

 

1 hour ago, Luna Bliss said:

But back to spiders, I'm getting ready to go into VR with my headset and face my fears. In VR, the experiences feel so real, far beyond the more detached experience of SL, and so it will feel like a spider is actually crawling on me. Perhaps I should make sure my heart is healthy so I don't, as you say, tap out of this mortal coil!
The way I'm viewing it, is that it's actually kind of unfair to the spider to have such prejudice against it just because it looks so different from me. In fact, this tribalism where we hate someone who is different from ourselves is the cause of all war and discord. A healthy fear of nature is good, of course, so that we minimize harm, but in my experience people bite far more often than spiders, and for very screwy reasons. 

That's quite unfortunate for arachnids as many people find their looks intolerable. They're not as fuzzy, cuddly, nor cute like kittens and puppies.
Tribalism has long outlived its usefulness for the modern world.  Unfortunately some people haven't caught up with evolving out of their reptilian brains.

 

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