Fred First's 2nd book, What We Hold In Our Hands, reads much like how I imagine a conversation with him over an iced tea would proceed. A wide range of topics, all approached with a naturalist's eye and the gentle yet wry humor of a southern gentleman. Fred has a level of contentment with his life that I'm still searching for, and the lessons learned from his stories will help me get there. Fred "gets" more out of his remote 40 acres in the VA mountains than many of us do in the hustle and bustle of the big city. The lesson here is to slow down, smell the roses, turn over the rocks in the creek with your kids, look up at the birds in the sky, and appreciate the wonder that is life on this small insignificant planet, even if your suburban back yard is as close as you normally get to the wilds of nature.
I also found some striking similarities between Fred and Brad Warner. However, connecting the dots between Fred and a punk rocker Buddhist monk will take a post all of its own, if I can ever actually get it down to words.
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