Raised in the tumult of Japan’s industrial powerhouse, the 11 men and women profiled in A Different Kind of Luxury have all made the transition to sustainable, fulfilling lives. Based on Andy Couturier's popular articles in The Japan Times, this lushly designed volume has a wealth of stories about real people who have created an abundance of time for contemplation, connecting with the natural world, and contributing to their communities. In their success is a lesson for us all: live a life that matters. Read an excerpt of the book here or here. Read a review of the book here, here, or here.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

"I’m glad you convinced me to buy it"

I got this letter from a new friend Tom Herzog who had been following this blog but who hadn't gotten the book.  I met him at a sustainability gathering here in Santa Cruz (we were meeting to trade home made preserves, what a great idea, and thanks to Meetup!).  So at some point in discussing gopher control, he realized that he knew about my book through the blog but hadn't bought it.  Boldly I said, "You should buy it!"  He did.  He took $20 out of his wallet, even though he was unemployed at the time, and money was tight, and then a few weeks later, I got this email from him.  

Farmer Tom Herzog
"It’s been a while since we first met/talked at the Preserve Swap Meetup Manfred hosted a few months back. I thought the Meetup was great and I’m glad I got to meet you.  I’ve been getting my little farming operation up and going. You might remember that we were talking for a bit about the Natural Process farming method I had learned while interning under Bob Cannard at Green String farm in Petaluma. Then at some point during the night I realized I had been following your blog for some time but had never bought the actual book. Well I’m sure glad you convinced me to buy it that night because you were right, I Loved it.
I just finished reading it and it’s almost completely covered in highlighter marking. So much I don’t want to forget! I’ll probably end up reading it few more times when I’m in need of some more inspiration in my life but for now I’m passing it on to friends that I know will love it as well. I really needed to hear the bits about people getting by with so little money and always being confident they will have enough to get by because that has been a current struggle in my life. 

Murata and his son, by the rice fields that feed them
    For me it was awesome to hear about all these different people successfully living the simple life that I’m currently trying to attain in my own life journey. I feel our Western society has done its best to hide these kind of people from us. They want our role models to be rich people, celebrities or musicians with all their expensive material things to trick us into thinking a life full of money is what truly brings happiness, which couldn’t be further from the truth. Most of these fake role models are so miserable and messed up they are dependent on some kind of drug/alcohol just to make it through the day. I know our national happiness has been in decline for some time and I really think it has a lot to do with our disconnect from nature and its daily destruction. I can only hope enough people wake up to this realization before it’s to late to mend all the damage we have caused to the mother of us all.
Gufu Watanabe (Chapter 8) displaying the warm conviviality you will find at all of these people's homes.

    Hopefully I’ll make it to another one of these Meetups and get to talk to you some more. Starting next week I’ll be out on my new farm full-time and trying to get the land/irrigation all prepped to get a good head start on this springs planting! 

Tom Herzog"
So, if you've been lurking around the blog, you really are missing out on great material.  We've just gone into our third printing (the first two have sold out), so please consider getting a copy for yourself, or for a friend. 

1 comment:

  1. I have read mine several times and have dog eared and highlighted it like crazy.
    This book is one of my favorites.