October 2018 - Vital Hempnewsletter
Sometimes we get a wake-up call…like last night.
I took my young daughter, Eden, to Marina Del Rey to visit Michelle on her big catamaran. She and my other dear friend Juan were docked for a week, preparing for a two-year journey. Juan had returned to the Bay Area for a final week of work, so Michelle, Eden and I hung out on the boat a bit, taking in the yachts, express boats, and other big boy toys docked around us, as the harbor seal swam by....
Next it was time for dinner, so we clambered into the little dingy and purred across the channel to a restaurant. Shortly after climbing down into the boat, Eden said, “Careful, your phone.” I ignored her, took the phone out of my hoodie pocket and filmed a little video—Michelle at the motor, Eden at the bow, the placid water around us.
When we docked (illegally) near the restaurant, I stepped out and heard a little “plunk.” Michelle said, “You dropped something. I knew immediately it was my phone. “It was my phone,” I said, looking down at the dark, inscrutable surface of the water. “No,” she said, I think it was something small.” I checked my pockets…no phone. She checked the boat…no phone. Eden gave me a hug.
We went to dinner, but I was pre-occupied at first. Was the phone perhaps water-proof? Could I perhaps hire a diver to find it in the morning? I didn’t so much miss the phone as the pictures and videos I had taken. “Didn’t you back up?” Michelle asked. I couldn’t remember the last time I had, and quickly scrolled through a series of recent events that would be lost: a visit to New York, sunset on the beach with Eden, moments with friends at the Southern Hemp Expo…. I wanted to find out about that diver!
So I borrowed Michelle’s phone, called Verizon and walked away to a corner couch out of sight, leaving Eden with Michelle. I spent fifteen minutes on three consecutive calls, dealing with automated mazes of dead-end verification, as Eden checked on me a couple of times… Eventually, I reached a representative who informed me that I had reached the wrong person, as this was a business phone; and (as I suspected), the business office was closed. So I returned to dinner and a little uncharacteristically, just let it go.
Losing my phone was the wake-up call. I realized how sudden and insignificant the sound and the action…just a little “plunk,” erasing months of life. Or maybe losing the phone just saved my life. I thought about how a moment of looking at my phone while driving could end my life—just like that: no big announcement, no fanfare, a simple swallowing into oblivion.
I experienced a bit of withdrawal that night at home. After immediately checking the computer (thank you icloud, the photos were all there), I still worried about notes and texts and checking all the apps I overzealously check. My mom recently told me I’ve been overdoing it on Facebook. I agree, and think I was addicted a bit; in the midst of a crucial, shameful chapter of our history, I thought sharing relevant posts was a vital thing to do. I now realize that interacting with the loves of my life is the most vital thing to do.
This computer, the phone…they’re tools. When their use becomes more compelling than the reality right in front of me, it’s time to wake up. So I’m grateful I dropped my phone into the marina yesterday. It’s a beautiful morning: powder grey clouds blanket the sky. Sun illuminates the palms and purple flowers. A couple of birds flutter from limb to telephone wire. It’s not an either/or…but they never stay on the wire too long. We can learn from the birds.
All this said, we’re throwing a PARTY! This Thursday, October 11th, from 7 pm to 11 pm at the Vital Hemp shop. Several have asked, “What’s the theme?” There’s really no theme…I hope that’s ok. It’s just time to party! We will be debuting some new products; so if the company of awesome people, good music and high spirits is not enough to entice you, perhaps you’ll come to sample new organic CBD tinctures by RE: Botanicals, a company that donates to regenerative agriculture projects; or the SAWA headphones & USB cables, wrapped artistically in colorful, up-cycled magazine paper beads by women in Kenya, and covered in Hemp Shield, a plant-based sealant; or come for some new hemp dresses, designed by Cerreah “Dutchess” Laykin. What a treat to be Dressed by Dutchess, in hemp!
In a little more than a week, we’re off to Bioneers (10/20-10/21) in the Bay Area. So if you’re there, or have friends there, we invite you to join us. https://bioneers.org for more info.
Early November, find us at the Hemp Industries Association Conference in Los Angeles. It’s the oldest B to B tradeshow, featuring leaders in the industry sharing information, inspiration and everything new in the world of hemp! https://www.thehia.org/event-2792993
--Looking forward to the next time we see each other.
Thanks for being vital,Ron Alcalay