There are countless examples of serendipity throughout my Sparta experience. Of course, other nouns may also apply – luck…karma…divine intervention. In any case, the past three plus years have been filled with unexpected blessings. It started with finding her in that lonely pasture in 2016 – in my old hometown no less – and has continued to this day. The biggest twist of luck came two years ago when I decided not to move Sparta to a remote location in the mountains above Calistoga. I was working as a chef at a retreat center there – a job which I enjoyed – but after a particularly nasty row with an overbearing boss I quit and decided to never work for anybody again. Plans to move Sparta there were scuttled and two months later that place burned to the ground in one of the most devastating wildfires in California history.

Naturally, most of my good fortune has appeared as little things – the right tool at the right time, a perfect fixture found at The Restore, cans of discontinued stain pulled from the Shermin Williams’ dumpster, enough to finish the job. I know this sounds insipid but through this process I’ve realized that good things come NOT to those who wait, but to those who are out beating the bushes, actively engaged in a project marked by passion and perseverance. Here is the most recent example: a random email from alerting me to free stuff in my neighborhood. I opened the link and voila – free slats for a full sized platform bed. Just what I needed to get started on Sparta’s sleeping quarters.

Time to grab some birch planks and build a frame

In the same link I found these two chairs – and with a coat of paint (color tbd) will give a midcentury vibe to my dining nook.


Mid-century Danish Farfalla

Bentwood Chairs   1960’s

Set of 2       $1,675 

Ok. Just kidding. I found knock-offs, not originals. But I only paid $20 for the pair.