December 2023 :: Our Latest + Winter Invitations...
| December 5, 2023 |
Greetings from the land, waters and hearts here at Aletheia. Right now the ginkgo over the pools has turned the brightest of all yellows, half finished in its business of releasing leaves back to the earth. The ground under our feet is damp, holding fresh rainwater, and the creek has come up to a fuller, burbling contentment.
Nestled in these wonderful autumn ways, us humans are in our own transitioning rhythms land-tending, enjoying togetherness, clearing out what's no longer needed, resetting essentials, and making space for the new and unknown ahead. Supported by the siren smells of mingled petrichor and hearthfire smoke, we feel blessed to be able to slow down and deeply rest while also metabolizing a particularly intense year.
We're also poignantly aware of the powerful currents within our global zeitgeist– the quickening chaos of human suffering erupting from generations-old wounds, and the ravages and revelations of visible and invisible peaceworkers everywhere. Here, we continue cultivating trust in what is ours to do, our ikigai, our unique purpose work, both personally and together. We also find ourselves in a continual rededication to the challenging art of staying within capacity knowing we cannot show up responsibly in our expanding circles of kinship and purpose work from a place of depletion. With this, our prayer in this time of diminishing light burns evermore brightly: may all we're working on and toward– and may all you're working on and toward– no matter how it may seem at times insignificant, nonlinear, or too far constrained by realms of privilege, may it contribute to a more healed world.
In this email I'm going to attempt a brief update on the highs and lows the crew here have traversed since our last send-out in April, and also invite you in to some of the emergent rhythms and opportunities here this fall and winter.
SPRING & SUMMER 2023 RECAP When we sent our last update back in March we were just giving ourselves over fully to the quickening labor of birthing the new pools while opening a return public guest season. Well, wow... What. A. Serious. Haul. This past spell nearly took us down, y'all. The top highlight is that, somehow, we've made it through to write you this update–a miracle we do not take lightly! Just enough capital came together via the support of several high-quality investors, an incredible Morton's community campaign, and via some painful but thankfully workable emergency short-term loans to allow us to complete the restoration and re-permitting of the pools, a full overhaul of the hot source pump, all new piping between the two, AND completely gutting and rebuilding the mineral filters... twice. (Yes, twice. And that's an action-packed story for another time!) It was a seriously gut-wrenching and teeth-clenching ride throughout the past year, especially April through October. There were such big highs and lows, all of which are now easier to talk about since it's in our rearview mirror.
After the long pool rebuilding push, opening and operating a return public guest season felt a bit like running a marathon after giving birth. But we did it. Just barely, but somehow, borne by many small miracles, it all came together. In a lot of ways 2023 has felt like the harmonic resonance of our first full year in 2016 just at a different octave in the spiral of time. Just like eight years ago we again found ourselves constantly at the edge of our capacity, or more often beyond it, with mineral filter fiascos, financial shortfalls, staff highs and lows, painful maintenance closures, county meetings... We just gave it our all over and over again, however imperfect it was, and we've made it through.
From the perspective of our guests who came–all 16,095 of them this season–it was a wonderful reopening with much to celebrate! The pools are beautifully restored, the mineral waters hotter than ever before, the cafe regularly served at levels previously seen on the 'big days' of years past, everyone chose their pricing on a new needs-based scale, and the place looked great. Behind the scenes we were exhausted, stretched, stressed, frustrated, fuming, heartbroken, delirious, at times joyful and proud, and thankful. Fortunately, this place wants to be in communion with us and vice versa–these waters want to be healed and cared for and to, in turn, help in humanity's healing and care. This is a foundational guiding principle for us, as it has its own purpose and volition far greater than ours alone. Though it continues to push us to our edges it also seems to keep guiding next steps and growing us along the way. We understand this to be a gift, and take no day for granted.
We've come full circle since we were first initiated into this underworld journey two years ago by the pool contractor defraud. That journey now feels complete and we're just re-emerging someplace new, raw and tender, with quite a bit of healing still to go. This winter will be extremely financially lean– we've made tough calls to allow us to coast on fumes to our next real income-producing time next spring. That's when we see this place finally coming into a fuller wholeness–and all of us being able to breathe deeply again. Still, in this raw, lean tender wintertime we are also feeling very rooted, connected, wizened and poised for the chapter ahead. With the foundation of new pools beneath us our focus in the coming year will be on building resiliency, resource flows and capacity.
SING & SOAK WINTER SATURDAYS at ALETHEIA For the time being our usual community days/potlucks will remain in hibernation mode. Instead we're inspired to be inviting in something a bit different–sharing songs and opening our voices together, book-ended of course by nourishing food and soaking in hot springs! We're blessed to live among many local soul-stirring song catchers and music-as-medicine change-makers. When we sing together we move grief, nourish our souls, and reconnect with strength, purpose and passion. It's an entire spiritual technology in and of itself! Over the years here we've come together off and on in times of challenge and celebration to blend our voices and rattle our bones, and dang if it doesn't uplift us each and every time. So we're gonna do it some more! We also want to courageously embrace and uplift being amateurs! Amateur from the Latin amare, meaning to love. So the format we want to play with is intended to support just that: no experience necessary; start from where you are.
We'll be hosting these monthly Sing & Soak Saturdays by donation in support of the healing waters and us through these lean months. Our first will be on Saturday, December 16th. You're invited to come to one, to several or to all.Though we're not offering it as a series per se, we do imagine we'll build on certain songs we learn together each month! Post-circle you're invited to stay for an optional curated potluck meal and soak time (early afternoon soaks before we sing are also an option). Check out all the details, monthly Saturday dates and how to RSVP by clicking the image above or by visiting our events page at aletheiasprings.com/events. We hope you may join for one or all!
HOT SPRINGS TUB CLUB IS BACK ON! Our private community hot springs 'tub club' is back on! This offering is our personal invitation to you as a friend of Aletheia, and to others in your trusted word-of-mouth network. We're able to offer this on a needs-based gifting basis–meaning, we like to fully support those who are most served by simply receiving, and we also gladly welcome gifts of financial support from others based on personal means, inspiration and life moment.
We can reserve time slots for Tub Club friends any day between roughly 9am-9pm for either of our two rustic tubs– a larger meadow tub (2-5 pp) or smaller creek tub (1-2 pp). Usually folks enjoy a 2 or 3-hour visit. We also cherish and most heartily encourage regulars! Come experience what these incredible 108° geothermal springs have to offer (and, for some, experience the cold plunge too!). For more info, or to ask after a time slot, please reach out to Laurie.
Thank you for reading our update!
Wishing you warmth & connection in this wintery time of growing night–