It’s been a pretty crazy year here in PGEW land. Between conferences, donning a new hat as a freelance food writer, the new site design and a gazillion other happenings, 2011 has kept me quite occupied!
It’s also been a year filled with life lessons, the biggest one being patience as I adjust to life with a chronic pain disorder. Long-time readers may recall that this year was particularly rough on me healthwise (though I managed to get through an entire 12 months without breaking a bone – hooray!), and learning to live with neuropathy has been very difficult indeed.
One thing I’ve realized is that I no longer have the energy & endurance I used to have. Daily nerve pain aside, this has been the hardest thing to adjust to because I’ve always been used to going non-stop without missing a beat. Now I find myself exhausted & in pain after a regular day of work & errands, and it’s forced me to slow down my life a lot.
A big part of the problem, of course, is my difficulty commuting. Not having a car in California isn’t impossible to get around in cities where mass transit has been done properly. Not having a car in Sacramento, on the other hand – pretty much the most inconvenient thing ever.
While I’m grateful for the public transit we do have, it’s expensive, runs infrequently and does not cover the vast expanse of the Sacramento area as well as it could. Because of this, it can actually take me up to 5 hours just to go to three stores on the weekend! Going to the laundromat? Forget it! It’s easier to brave the elements walking around with my granny cart full of clothes than try to wait for a bus that never comes. But by the time I get home, I’m exhausted, in pain, and barely have the energy to put away my parcels, let alone cook, photograph & write.
And I’m sure you’ve noticed. My productivity this year has been much lower than I’d prefer, simply because of what I mentioned above. And it kills me. I’m not used to having to abide by other schedules, whether it’s Regional Transit’s or my PHN flare-ups. Having to put ideas & posts on hold for a train or some pain is just… just…. well, it’s vexing as all hell.
So what’s your point, Poor Girl?
In short, I am done with not having a car. I’ve officially reached my limit and decided it’s time to suck it up and somehow fit in all the costs of a car in order to make my life a little easier. It can’t be done overnight, and I may end up posting way more bare bones recipes once I do get one, but a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do.
Because my credit is shot, I’m doing this the old fashioned way: I’m savin’ up for the car slowly. So how will I do that when I already live paycheck to paycheck (and sometimes not even that well)? I’m opening up the first ever real PGEW store.
It’s a small store with a modest amount of products, but I’ve put a lot of work into it and I’m quite pleased with what’s on there. There are canvas totes for trips to the grocery store or farmers markets; calendars with some of your favorite PGEW photos; there’s even a little apron to help keep you looking neat & tidy as you make my Hearty Mushroom & Potato Soup.
Every single penny of the small commission I’ll earn (I wanted to make sure things were affordable for you guys, too!) will go directly into the Poor Girl Needs A Car fund. And believe me, once I get that car, we’ll all win: since I’ll be able to get around in a timely fashion, I won’t be taxing my poor health as much as I am right now, which means I’ll be able to blog more (and better).
I don’t expect to get rich and I don’t expect to have enough money to buy the Prius I want so badly (yes, I’m a Prius-loving hippie, lol), but even a little beat-up Honda or Toyota would make me happy. Many of you have helped me in the past and I’ve never been able to give you anything in return buy my sincere gratitude and a new recipe. This way, you’ll have a little something to show for your kindness & unfailing support.
To access the PGEW General Store, simply click on the “Shop” tab in the main menu. You can also click on the item you like in the store widget located on the right sidebar.
Thanks for taking the time to read this! It’s not always easy to admit to needing help, but common sense has finally won on this one and I’m doing what needs to be done. Maybe by this time next year, I’ll be posting a picture of my new ride on Photo Friday! Here’s hopin’!