Thursday, March 10, 2011

Hudsonian Godwit: The Harbin property and Mainside, as topography, have fairly familiar people flow-patterns, as a kind of platform

Harbin ethnography:

... The new Diamond J ranch which is quite close to Harbin Hot Springs, probably has more traffic from Harbin Hot Springs, than Sierra Hot Springs has with Harbin, but what the Diamond J ranch is going to be used for is still taking shape.

The Harbin property and especially the most-frequented Mainside area, as topography, have fairly familiar people flow-patterns, as a kind of platform, even. The Harbin valley is a fairly open place, and there are very few 'banned,' or off-limits' parts of Harbin, except, for example, when there's a retreat in the Conference Center (or Meadow building), when the perimeter of these places defines what is off-limits to non-workshop participants. While what's open, and what's not accessible, may have changed over time since 1972, people who come through the Harbin Gate often find where they're going to sleep that night, whether in a room or camping out, put away their food in Fern community kitchen, and then head for the pools. After the pools, they may simply hang out in the pool area, or back where they're spending the night, or wander down to Mainside to the Blue Room cafe, or the Harbin Market, and then go to a yoga class, or a 2 hour workshop. At dinner time, they may head to the Harbin Restaurant, or to Fern community kitchen. In the evening, they may head to a dance, an AA (any A) meeting, or see a film or two in the Harbin movie theater. During much of this, guests and residents may be heading, naked, into and out of the pools. Residents' flow-patterns are more focused on the what makes Harbin function as a retreat center, but residents, too, head into the pools, to the dances, or to the movies, a lot. Harbin residents also help give form to the Harbin's culture, as place, in terms of, for example, participating in the cuddling in the pools, exploring contact improvisation at the dances, or simply hanging out. These flow-patterns have emerged since 1972, and are pretty familiar to frequent-floaters, as well as Harbin residents.

Where Harbin visitors and residents soar, beyond the familiar flow-patterns, are in the freedoms and serendipities of place. ...

( - March 10, 2011)

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