Culture Shock: Manhattan to Rural Washington-The Mother Earth News Fair

Boy, what a difference. From the intensity of NYC to a laid-back medium sized town in farmland with wide streets and houses with porches…I got here (Puyallup, Washington) yesterday around noon. About half an hour in my rented Ford Focus south of Seattle. Town of about 35,000, Puyallup is in a fertile farming valley. With about 5 hours sleep in 2 nights (haven’t I said this before?), I checked into hotel and went to The Mother Earth News Fair in the giant (“6th largest in world”) Puyallup Fair Grounds, got sucked in and stayed all afternoon (rather than taking a nap).

   I absolutely love this fair. Totally up my alley. First thing off, I went into the chicken building, where they had some 500 chickens on display. Chicken aficionado’s paradise. I lost track of time looking at all  these beautiful birds. Rest of afternoon: prettiest yurts (for sale, made in Mongolia) I’ve ever seen, a tiny high-tech exquisitely built stainless steel stove, tons of tools, ideas, inspiration for gardeners, builders, homesteaders…

   Writing this on rainy Sunday morning from the Anthem Cafe in downtown Puyallup with a triple shot (very good) latte and heated cinnamon bun, getting ready to go down to the fairgrounds, wander more, shoot more pics, and get ready for my “The Half Acre Homestead” presentation today.

   I’m way backed up on photos to post, will do so when I get time. Experiences too like last night’s fish and chips and 2 pints of Irish Death chocolately dark porter at the TK Irish Pub & Eatery with 6 sports TVs going, good hometown bar ambiance and some pretty drunk Puyallupers cheering on Seattle’s soccer team and singing one song after another…

   I just handed one of the Tiny Homes mini books to a little curly haired lively looking 4-year-or-so-old boy in the cafe here and he’s been thumbing through the pages for several minutes…

Chicken pictured here was listed as: “Classification: Modern Game; Variety: Brown/Red. Elegant little bird.

About Lloyd Kahn

Lloyd Kahn started building his own home in the early '60s and went on to publish books showing homeowners how they could build their own homes with their own hands. He got his start in publishing by working as the shelter editor of the Whole Earth Catalog with Stewart Brand in the late '60s. He has since authored six highly-graphic books on homemade building, all of which are interrelated. The books, "The Shelter Library Of Building Books," include Shelter, Shelter II (1978), Home Work (2004), Builders of the Pacific Coast (2008), Tiny Homes (2012), and Tiny Homes on the Move (2014). Lloyd operates from Northern California studio built of recycled lumber, set in the midst of a vegetable garden, and hooked into the world via five Mac computers. You can check out videos (one with over 450,000 views) on Lloyd by doing a search on YouTube:

2 Responses to Culture Shock: Manhattan to Rural Washington-The Mother Earth News Fair

  1. have to say, since the start of reading your blog, have enjoyed learning about the different chickens…That one is a doozy…Looks a bit like a clown to me..grin.

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