I ask questions.
My grandmother used to tell me that “curiosity killed the cat” when, as a child, I would pursue her with endless strings of questions. Why are buggy horses only trotters or pacers? Why do I only have “a wad” to spend at the dime store? Why does this fern close when I touch it?
My mother was one of those women that just expected things to be done once the task had been handed down. Just do it and that is that. I always asked “why?” and “for what purpose?” until it drove her nuts. I also had this problem with my teachers–particularly in math and other hard sciences. And like it was with my mother, the answer often came down as “Because.” [Because, just because, and because I said so don’t actually satisfy my curiosity–they do, however, make me feel very contrary and non-compliant.]
Now I like to find out how things are done. Here are a few things on the top of my Need-To-Learn list:
- How to make cheese.
- How to can/store enough fruit and veggies for the winter.
- How to make practical dishware (plates, bowls, cups, jugs).
- How to spin yarn on a spindle and a spinning wheel.
- How to shoe a horse.
Why would I ever need to know these things? The truth is absolutely irrational: what if civilization collapsed and I suddenly needed to know how to do a ton of practical things by hand (without the help of electricity or the internet)? I, like all the women in my family, always think about the worst scenario and try to be prepared.
I read books on knitting and gardening and Google information on how to build things. I watch YouTube for demonstrations on just about anything I can think I might need to see!
Sometimes what I enjoy is less practically motivated: folk tales, history, linguistics, fiction, astronomy and astrophysics, geology, poetry, religion.
I wish everyone as much curiosity in their life as I have in mine. And, if I’m that cat…well, at least I will die happy.