Tuesday, April 6, 2010

On Work and Community

I've recently finished reading a wonderful book called "Better Off" by Eric Brende. Brende and his wife devoted 18 months to living with an Amish-like community to explore whether modern "conveniences" really make life easier.

The author's realizations about work and community really resonated with me. He articulated a phenomenon I've experienced time and again while working with Heirloom Gardens. Here's a sample of what he has to say:

" 'Many hands make work light.' This statement was true, though hard to explain. Gradually, as you applied yourself to your task, the threads of friendship and conversation would grow and connect you to the laborers around you. Then everything suddenly became inverted. You'd forget you were working and get caught up in the camaraderie, the sense of lightened effort. This surely must rank among the greatest of labor-saving secrets. Work folded into fun and disappeared. Friendship, conversation, exercise, fresh air, all melded together into a single act of mutual self-forgetting. "

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