I answered the top layers easily: raising zero waste consciousness, decreasing the landfill, decreasing consumerism. I proudly spouted some permaculture principles. She was researching and writing on Maker Culture primarily based on sharing hardware and software in the computer world. She was hunting for tendrils of linkage to the growing world of volunteer repair people who were sharing skills not related to cyberspace.
Then she took me to another level beneath those answers and I heard myself talking about sharing skills, sharing friendship, finding abundance locally, building community, healing the earth. She was a sociologist so I felt comfort discussing this level with her.
I felt sure she thought I might laugh at her question, just as I thought she might dismiss my prior answer. Instead I felt a musical trill in my heartbeat to be honored with the joy of looking with this bright, young, academically-minded woman at the roots of what we do, why we care so deeply about our planet, our planet-mates, life as we know it. I paused not because I didn't know the answer I wanted to give, not for fear of how she would take my answer, but to savor the words I was about to say. I felt such gratitude that this stranger had phoned me to take me on this personal and even intimate one hour journey. I replied, “Well, it is really all about Love.” Yes, I saw a capital on the word as I spoke it with new understanding of its power. I heard a pause on her end then in a very small breathy awe-filled voice she just said, “wow”.
That tiny wow was a spark in the mind of a young woman who may share new insights though her work. It is the ripple each of you is sending out. And it all goes with deep thanks to each one of you who has participated even in the smallest way with Repair Café. Your ripple is felt more distantly than you imagine.
— Therese Brummel