Living on an island miles offshore, there is one hard truth that we’re coming to terms with…It is really hard to have a pizza delivered. Apparently, the same goes for mower parts.

Within the first two days of arriving on the island, the clutch on the riding mower burned out. What would be a fairly quick fix on the mainland has not been resolved in over two weeks, despite the Herculean efforts of the FOSILS volunteer staff. It’s just a matter of timing; if we can’t diagnose the problem and order a part in time, we’ll miss the Wednesday delivery to the island and have to wait another week. So it occurred to me today, as I crawled around on the oil stained, grass covered concrete floor of the whistle house looking for a tiny locator pin that I had dropped and lost – a part that I sourced a replacement for but would not arrive until a week from Thursday – that this is perhaps the best scene of island life I can draw for you. Despite a world of Buy It Now immediacy, of Facebook connectedness and of instant digital gratification, we are still physically cut off from everything. We can’t run out and pick another up, we have to make it work with what we have. It is at the same time annoying and also strangely motivating, and even at times liberating.

I did finally find the locator pin, it was in a literal haystack. Now, if only the clutch will arrive in time.

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