by Pia Fritsch, Prairiewoods Intern

Since helping get things ready for the Garden Party I’ve realized how much work goes into creating those events. I never really thought about how much work goes into that, but somebody has to set the tables out and wrap the baskets. I felt like I could see a lot more of the behind the scenes work that goes on for these events. When there are that many guests even making name tags and table posters can become a big task. It made all of the difference that we got in the day before to set up. That really helped the day of the event go a lot smoother and keep people from getting too wound up from all of the rushing around. It seemed like the event went over well overall. I was at the raffle table which was a little slow at first but when someone made an announcement for the “dough for dough” option all of the bread sold right after that. The auctioneer was funny and hooked people in. He talked with people directly to get them bidding which seemed to make some people uncomfortable to have everyone’s attention on them while he was negotiating a deal with him. It did get people to bid higher though. It was good to see that whole process happen to have as a reference point, but I also know now that event hosting, particularly of that size, is not something I want to deal with often. It went well, but I just can tell that that is not where my highest excitement is. I prefer to talk with people one on one in less crowded environments. It’s good to have a variety of people who provide different talents and also to be versatile in order to meet the circumstances.

There was also a Native American flute concert Friday that I got to watch. I really liked the woman who did the introductory songs. She sang one song that she had written for her teenage daughter on becoming a woman which really struck a chord in me. Her chorus line came back to me a few days after I heard it. “I am a strong and powerful native woman. I am who I’m supposed to be.” She introduced the song by saying how she came from a part Native American family. Native American communities are still repressed within our culture and time, and women tend to bear the brunt of that repression. I am definitely not Native American or repressed. In fact, I am very privileged, and I am aware of that. But her song kept coming back to me later. I really appreciated it as an anthem for women. We need to embrace our strengths, whatever they may be, and be proud of that. The rest of the flute concert was nice, though the finer points of music tend to just wash by me. I appreciated how the flautist told us stories about himself and his songs. He really developed a relationship with us as the audience with his open, interesting, and humble persona.

I have also been reading ten poems to change your life. It starts off analyzing Mary Oliver’s poem, “Journey.” The poem calls for a kind of madness to start your journey. You need to leave rational thinking and other people’s expectations and embark on your own journey. This action is based in faith which arises from gnosis, “the knowing that has no need of information” (Housden 18). I love this term, because it so accurately describes this feeling. Sometimes people do surprising things which don’t make sense from the outside, but this is because they are responding to an inner tug. We live in a culture that values rational, linear thinking, but most of my decisions come from a gut feeling. Part of the paradigm shift that our global culture has to embrace is the recognition of the intuitive knowing. That knowing is where our soul is communicating with us. That is our inner compass telling us what we need to do. For example, playing Native American Flute for a profession might not make sense to a lot of people, but that artist made it work for himself.