land poor


Poking around the internet this morning, I came upon this quote from the 14th Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso. This was in response to the question “what surprises you most about humanity?”

 Because he sacrifices his health in order to make money.
 Then he sacrifices money to recuperate his health.
 And then he is so anxious about the future that he does not enjoy the present;
 the result being that he does not live in the present or the future;
 he lives as if he is never going to die, and then dies having never really lived.”

I found the quote on a website called .

I guess that you do what you think you have to do.

You do what everybody else does.


Check out that website that I pulled this quote from.

Not right now!! Read this first.

Don’t go veering off to find something more interesting to do quite yet.


Anyway, the blog….the blog I mentioned above…is about a family travelling around South America in a Westphalia van….a VW van….and the adventures they have.

I’m getting set to go off on my daily adventure soon.

You know, though….it really is an adventure. It’s an adventure to get out on the road and deliver mail and listen to the radio.

It’s an amazing opportunity to be fairly independent and travel around like that.

Of course, it’s not South America or something equally as exotic…..but it’s pretty cool and very pretty.

A rural route in the mountains of Western North Carolina is a good thing.

(I saw a mail man/woman out in Montana, though….driving on some of those lonely, long roads….and thought it looked pretty cool, too. How about that? A really rural route…that would be kind of crazy to be so far out. A friend on my route with mutual ties to Idaho told me about a route that’s delivered by boat up the Snake River….3 or 4 days out at a time. That would be amazing….bad for a family man but amazing….)

Thinking about travel and adventure….always thinking about adventure…

Thinking about the phrase “land poor”, too.

Some of these guys around here own whole mountains.

Their parents owned them….and maybe their parents owned them before that.

They are sitting on their money.

All that land is their money.

But they won’t sell their heritage.

What’s money, anyway? A ghost? A made up concept that everyone thinks is real? A twisted measure of “value” that we chase like it has lasting ….what’s the word?….value….in our lives?

The dirt is real…it’s alive.

There is a hawk that flies across it…..shadows on the fields.

These people may be land poor…just enough money to buy some parts for the tractor and to pay the taxes….just enough for some food…just enough.

Sometimes, when they leave this earth, the grandkids sell off the land so they can buy a Harley and a new doublewide.

You don’t get it back, either.

What we value defines us.

That’s a hard responsibility to make the right choices.

“light enough to travel” The Be Good Tanyas



About Peter Rorvig

I'm a non-practicing artist, a mailman, a husband, a father...not listed in order of importance. I believe that things can always get better....and that things are usually better than we think.

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