LostintheFogSF

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Location: san francisco, CA

I don't know my focus of my blog yet but tentatively I want it to be about reviewing restaurants/bars or just events that go around the city and the bay area

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Stonelake Farm

As I piled into Kelly's car at 5 a.m. , two things crossed my mind: What am I doing up this early in the morning? and how did Silver convince us to drive 6 hours to a farm out in the boonies?

However, after 6 hours, a 37 mile windy road and a 6 mile dirt road later, we arrived at a quiet and peaceful farm, with scenic views of the vast forest that surrounded us.

Stonelake Farm isn't your typical farm either. Yes it has its goats, chickens, and two adorable dogs, but is also environmentally conscious as well. Stonelake generates its energy with a system of solar panels that heats up water which provides electricity to the households. Not to mention it also uses the nearby creek to generate electricity as well. Every little detail has been meticulously planned out, even down to the hand made benches along the hillside to watch the sunset or to enjoy a delicious meal.


One of the masterminds behind this farm is Francis, and is one of the reasons why Stonelake Farm is so self-sufficient . Francis has been a outdoors man all his life and can prove it, by making a fire in a matter of minutes with his trusty bow and elk bone. I was amazed how quickly he could create fire and then hit he me how screwed I would be if I ever got lost in the forest. Francis still retains skills, like making fire or surviving in the wild, that my generation has lost. For centuries these skills were a necessity to survive, but now in today's society, fire can be started with a match and you can go get all the food you want two blocks down the street at a grocery store.
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Silver Attempting to Chop Wood                                                             Sunny Skies

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One of the things that struck me while I was at Stonelake was when Francis brought out the chainsaw to saw up some firewood. I remember him saying "Everybody clover your ears" before he fired up the chainsaw. As I braced myself for what I thought would be a excruciating loud noise, the sound came nothing to what I was expecting and was pretty bearable for my standards. But I realized for Francis, that was about the loudest noise he probably hears out on the farm, except for the machines the new neighbors pass by in. I also noticed Francis had earmuffs to block the sound of the chainsaw. I realized how much other distractions we have in the city and how we have become accustomed to adapting to these noises. I know I can read a book on the bus with multiple conversations going on around me, not to mention the street noise. Matter of fact it would be kind of weird to read in almost total silence and I would have to look around to see what is wrong.


I think Francis might have a hard time adjusting to city life now that he has lived in rural surroundings for so long. But on the other hand I would be totally lost if I had to live in on a farm and be able to survive for myself. I guess what I am wondering is it possible to adjust to a new lifestyle after a certain time living in a completely different one? All I know is I learned a lot from Francis and the lifestyle he chooses and I am glad he found a place where he can live the way he wants and be at peace with himself, which is what I think everyone is looking for at some point in their life.

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The Icy Waterfall at
Stonelake. Believe me I know!        




                                      The Octagon as snow begins to fall

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One of reasons why I was glad to go to Stonelake was to get away from the city for a few days and forget about all the stressful things in my life. With beautiful waterfalls and big rocks to climb on, I was glad I got to enjoy this place for what it is, instead of thinking about graduating and all of the tests upcoming in the next few weeks. I told myself before I went that I wasn't going to think about these things because I wanted to experience all the farm had to offer. I felt by thinking about all the stuff going on here, it would take away from my experience at the farm. I am thankful that Stonelake had such beautiful scenery and you could just enjoy being there. From waterfalls, to beautiful views, Stonelake is a great place to get away from it all. It also helps that you have 3 glorious meals a day and some drinks to pass the time and look forward too every 3 hours or so.

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Before                                                                                            After

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Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Kevin Epps

"Have your people 'Kiss my ASS'", read the T-Shirt that Kevin Epps wore to the Digital Literacy talk at USF last Thursday. Kevin's talk brought a new and fresh perspective to the Davies Forum by discussing the Digital Divide and ownership rights over digital content.

Kevin comes from Hunters Point, a district at the edge of San Francisco's city limits. Kevin has made a successful career of out of making digital media even though HP is ridden with drugs and gang violence. What I love about Kevin is he didn't run away from his roots and his communities problems, instead he embraced them and chose to make a film about life in Hunter's Point. In this film, "Straight Outta Hunter's Point", Kevin bravley goes out onto the streets of HP to interview local residents about the issues concerning this community. However, Kevin explains in his talk that this film needed to be done to raise the awareness of what is going on in HP to the rest of the residents in San Francisco. Kevin brings a voice to the community that can be spread around the City using digital media.

Kevin is also trying to let people know in his community about digital media and trying to raise funds to cut the digital divide. The digital divide is one topic that we have not discused in class but effects many people in low-income communities. Often these communities, like Hunters Point, loose their voice in the community because they have less outlets to voice their problems and concerns. Kevin is teaming up with Google, to get young producers to tell short stories about their communities. Kevin is hoping to get more young people involved in digital media in Hunters Point to give a bigger voice to this community. Let's hope their voice will get loud enough so that every resident in San Francsico knows all the major issues that have effected this community.

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