And I Shall Have Some Peace There: Trading in the Fast Lane for My Own Dirt Road by Margaret Roach
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
As someone working in the corporate sector in the world who spends her days longing to be in her garden, this was an absolute must-read for me. Here you have successful Margaret Roach with the job that many women/people would die to have–at Martha Stewart Living–who found a way to let all of the pressures go to live in a secluded place with a very slow pace…just to be one with nature.
This story isn’t gardening 101 or any form of a self-help manual, but rather a story that belongs to the author. Her story and her journey of leaving the high-powered position at Martha Stewart and taking a huge risk and a huge gamble (something everyone would fear and second-guess to no end) is inspirational to say the least. She asks herself time and time again, “Who am I if I am not email@example.com?” At first she is overwhelmed and fearful of the alone-ness of it all, but through the eyes of birds, beasts, and vegetables (and great neighbors), she begins to live the life of her dreams.
The writing can be difficult to follow at first and quite poetic/stream of consciousness. It bothered me at the start, but it ended up becoming one of the things I loved the most about this book.
She begins by asking, “How did I go from she who lives in the world to she who lives in the woods?” For those of us that dream of a more enriched and rural life, we can read into Ms. Roach’s journey as moving INTO the world, rather than leaving it behind.
Thank you, Cara, for your take on the book. Yes, I am the perpetrator of some very odd sentence structure…but if you come hear me lecture someday, you’ll see (hear) that it’s how I talk (and how I think). And so you are exactly right: It’s a stream of (my) consciousness. Glad you stuck with it. On my blog I can do straight how-to and so on, but when I am trying to puzzle bigger things out…well, you read what happens, and what it sounds like.
Thank you so much for commenting, Margaret. I am honored. You are an inspiration to us all. Your book resonated with me on so many levels. I, too, have a high pressure publishing job in a major city and the time I spend growing things is magical to me. Rural New York state also tugs at my heartstrings because I grew up outside of Binghamton–not terribly far from where you are. I enjoyed your book immensely! I hope to someday attend a lecture of yours. I also hope your furry friend, Jack, is doing well, as I loved reading about your courtship. Next up–your other book: A Way to Garden.