A few months ago, I read Farewell, My Subaru, by Doug Fine. I've been meaning to write something nice about it ever since.
The premise is: This guy, Doug Fine, wants to live off the grid. He wants to see if he can make it on his own without destroying the environment. For some reason that I can't quite fathom, he moves to New Mexico to do this. Anyway, hilarity ensues.
This is not what I was expecting. I was sort of expecting a preachy thing about how we should all live like this, but no, that is not at all what this is. Fine does a fine job of showing just how nearly impossible it can be to live up to your ideals. And he does it all with goats. Did I mention goats? Goats are my favorite part of this book. His goats are most definitely his sidekicks.
Some of my favorite moments:
* The only diesel car he can find (to convert to cooking oil fueled) is a monster truck, with actual steps that go up the side.
* His continual battle with the goats to maintain a rose garden.
* The moment when everyone goes to watch the creek rise.
* When he dates the triathlon runner in part just because she's the only one who can make it across the flooded river with his goat medicine.
* Seeing other like minded people at the dreaded Walmart.
* The accusing look on the chicken's face just before it is to be eaten by the coyote. ("Why didn't you protect me?")
* Climbing up a windmill platform and looking down when he really really shouldn't look down.
If you like true farm stories with a touch of humor (which I assume you do, because you read my stuff) you will probably like this. A warning to my right wing readers: he really bashes Bush a lot! But, interestingly, many of his friends seem to be Republicans. So gather what you will. Highly recommended reading.