Alef Arendsen

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since Jul 01, 2013
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Recent posts by Alef Arendsen

So, without having read the numerous other replies, I wanted to chime in as well with our experience.

We only had this happen once so far, when a fox came to kill a few of our chickens. Fortunately the kids weren't around to see the mess he / she left behind in the orchard.

We did not show the kids (almost 4 and almost 2) the dead animals but we did immediately decide to do a short ceremony. We had some roses and calendula flowering at the time, took some petals and spread them in a stream running alongside the orchard. The kids did some as well and we thanked the animals for all they did for us (fun, warmth, eggs, chicks, et cetera). Especially and of course the eldest one asked a lot of questions but at no point there was a difficult moment or anything.

I like to think that we continue to do a little ceremony like this; it only took 10 minutes but was very valuable to me and I hope also to the kids.

3 years ago

S Bengi wrote:It never hurts to have a weekend getaway homestead, if you like it it can become full time house.

Haha thanks. That may happen with the cabin in 10 years from now. With a little kid hiking up 2 to 3 miles in winter through 2' of snow is not really feasible (road not cleared in winter).

We're moving to Le Marche though somewhere in October (which is a lot further South) explore that area.

One things for sure: Amsterdam is not the place.

7 years ago

I've been lurking for a bit, so thought it was time to introduce myself. Posting will probably follow somewhat later.

With a kid coming our way somewhere in the next six to eight weeks, I am (I should really say we are) looking at what environment we're going to give the little girl to grow up in.

Until a few months ago I never thought we might think about an environment other than the competitive, fast-paced, technology-oriented environment which we're in right now. It's what defined progress for me.

I founded three companies, two in software (Paul probably knows SpringSource) and one in electric cars (or rather the charging infrastructure to support them), which are all successful in their individual fields. That is how I thought I could help the world become a better place.

Occasionally when in need of some rest, I went to the Alps. Shortly after arriving at our place (we have a little cabin close to the Matterhorn), I always picked up my scythe get some of the grass out of the way so we could get to our terrace. Somehow that always gave me a strange sensation of being one with nature. Soothing, balanced, at peace. I could never really place it, especially when the thought of the companies back home and their respective challenges and opportunities popped up again.

Then I read some stuff by Paul Kingsnorth, saw some videos by Ben Falk, browsed through some of Sepp's books.

Then it hit me. That strange feeling I had when scything in the Alps suddenly had a name. It was 'connecting with nature'.

And now I'm confused... And humbled...

Which is a good state to be in for a while.

I'll probably document some of the stuff we'll be encountering on our journey over the next few months. Until then, I might bother you guys with an occasional naive question here and there. Apologies up front .


P.s. we're in the centre of Amsterdam, if you in the neighborhood, drop me a line. You gotta love dogs though, otherwise Floris, our Rhodesian Ridgeback will eat you alive!
7 years ago