The Eleven – 7.11.17 The Oregon Country Fair (OCF) Revue

Greetings!

Happy 11th. I just returned from the Oregon Country Faire (OCF) and I can still feel the dust in and on me. Fairy dust. Dust of connection – dust of love. OCF is one of the most special events I participate in – it’s a chance to watch a group of humans growing; changing; aging; celebrating and coming together as a large village. I see a lot of the same faces year after year and one of my joys is spending the day wandering aimlessly until I meet a friend or make a new one. Here are some highlights from his year:

1. The little girl (3) who decided I was the right person to play a game of “fall into/onto Albert” – and her parents who graciously allowed it to unfold beautifully.

2. Hours spent in the Ritz (pictured below) – a collection of showers, saunas, a glorious fire pit and often live music – the large collection of naked people – singing together in the sauna; wandering the big open area and standing laughing in the sunshine – it’s a highlight of every day at the Fair for me. It’s also the perfect place to share village news.
3. My pals at Camp It doesn’t Matterhorn: a wonderful gaggle who come together each year to help my friend Marcia Wiley build and run a great booth at the Fair: Wileyware, booth L12.
4. Serendipity; amazing food; laughter; staying up late; trying new things; giving and getting lots of touch (this year I brought my massage table – a definite PLUS!); playing music at Otter Camp; dancing to music at nearby late night music happenings; James; fair magic; the guy who approached me with a big hug – mistaking me for someone he thought he knew and then, after some conversation inviting me back to his camp for a cold beer on tap in the middle of the woods; natural bug spray; the amazing crafts at Fair – WOW! – seeing some of my clients ‘ booths and hanging out with them; great food! – quieter music along the pathways; hanging out with friends on the sweep crew; the many ideas that came to me about how to live life fully. Getting to a place of a really quiet mind on Saturday – that was pretty interesting. Here’s a little taste via video…
5. We have a group of teens in our camp from out of town (Seattle). I met another group of Fair kids who knew their way around and sent them as a gift to our booth to take our teens out – that was a fun match-making 🙂 – watching said group walk arm in arm – giggling, back into the Fair about 5 hours after I’d set this match in motion. 
It’s important that we have these gatherings and this year’s Fair felt very important for this community. Partially to re-group given the current political climate… It’s a group that comes together to make magic. To teach each other life skills. To pass along the skills that we have around communication; organization; kindness; and long-term relationships – and practice them. And MAKE MISTAKES!
This Fair taught me once again that you just can’t help make mistakes when you are trying new things and pushing past your comfort zone. It’s just about impossible when you’re surrounded by so many people and various depths/types of relationships – not to make mistakes. I think that’s one of the challenges in our society – that’s it’s somewhat easy and safe to stay in one’s cocoon – stay behind the laptop; stay in one’s life and just get by. The Fair invites us to get out of our comfort zones (it’s probably closer to how people who live in villages live) – it presents us with the opportunity to make and test out new connections rapidly. As that’s happening we all get stressed and balls drop and balls are juggled exquisitely, too! This is how we learn. I did my fair share of magic and messes this year and I look forward to coming back next year to do it all again.
I feel so grateful and thankful that the Oregon Country Fair exists. Thank you wise and wonderful Eugenians (mostly) who spend countless hours, blood, sweat, tears, and money to make this available to people. As I heard on the path a number of times – Oregon Country Fair forever!
I received good advice from friends at the Fair to put it out to my community that I am single and seeking a partner. Here’s my OKC profile – if you know someone you think I’d be a fit with, please let me know! 
Happy 11th!  Happy Summer!
Love,
Albert
Albert
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