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December 9, 2004 Dear family and friends, (Paige writes): It has been six months since our wedding, and seven months of living in five hundred forty square feet of space. Although space is tight, we’re doing fine in our own little corners, occasionally waving to each other from our respective computer monitors. Here is what we’ve been up to: Our epic honeymoon to Asia was fascinating and tiring. We went to Vietnam, Cambodia, and Thailand. In Vietnam, we saw the War Museum in Ho Chi Minh, rode through the countryside on the back of an “Easy Rider’s”motorcycle in Dalat, rented our own motorcycle on Cat Bah Island, saw the real Ho Chi Minh lying preserved in a mausoleum in Hanoi, and explored some ancient ruins near Hoi An. In Cambodia, we spent four days exploring Angkor Wat. The ruins of the ancient temples are 600 to 1200 years old and they cover 77 square miles. Four days was not long enough to explore. We visited the ‘River of One Thousand Lingams’, the ‘Citadel Of The Women’, and the Bas relief of an epic battle that wrapped itself around the perimeter of the gallery inside Angkor Wat. We are happily coexisting with two new hairless rats. Poppy died in August. He is now buried under the blue spruce tree in front of our home. (Jonathan continues): Hey, Paige, what about Thailand? That was where Jonathan became familiar with Paige’s life years before they ever met; staying with her lovely family in Ban Phu, exploring the border of Laos and Chiang Mai, watching elephants in the forest and street walkers in Bangkok. So many things to see and process! Paige’s fluency in Thai was a marvel to behold, especially when she took the Tuk-Tuk drivers to task. You can check out the photographs and haiku from the trip at haikutimes.com, and Jon will be preparing a printed version of the whole trip as well. But back to the place where we left most of you off. We had a fabulous wedding made so by the love of all involved, a ritual unmatched by anything we have been part of. Thank you, so much, to those who were there, and for those who were there in spirit. Who would have thought... Paige is teaching 4th grade this year, happy with the chance to teach slightly older kids. She and other teachers at Sanchez Elementary have been working hard at making the school, and kids, succeed. The kids and janitors love her rats! She has also been enjoying swimming, hiking and biking, and can now easily bike or walk to downtown locations from our Mapleton pad.


Jonathan continues to manage an unusual building at the mouth of Boulder Canyon, known as the Solstice Institute. This involves taking care of an old building, renting the rooms out to pay for those renovations, and then managing the interpersonal relationships of all the groups who rent the space. It’s a challenging bill, but years of psychotherapy research, accounting classes and construction experience have prepared him...wait! Funny what life dishes you. All things art and creativity have not been diminished by this diversion; in fact, with a schedule that he sets for himself, Jon’s many artistic goals continue to have an active life, including an obsession with using the internet as a vehicle for the haikutimes, music composition, drawing and design projects, and other things. This year’s harvest of drawings was smaller than that of the past 26 years, but Jonathan reports: “Hey! how often do you have to help plan a wedding and then get married, build a shed, and then move your wife into the mobile-home-formerly-known-as-the-bachelorpad?” Of course, Jonathan now sleeps in the shed. Another important but significant time-hog for Jonathan has been his role as chair of the management committee for the community he and Paige live in. This volunteer activity builds on and reflects ten years’ involvement in helping the Mapleton Mobile Home Park turn a historical corner: making real the vision of living in a permanently affordable, resident-managed community. This vision, shared by a dedicated cadre of a group of park residents, is coming true, with the park land being purchased by Thistle Community Housing, a non-profit, by the end of this year. The interesting thing about such a development is that the residents will have control over how the park is managed, as well as assuming responsibility for debt payments for the land. Jonathan also oversees the MHA’s website, at: http://www.mapletonhomeassoc.org (where you can see more details if you so desire). It’s been a lot of work with seemingly endless meetings, but it feels right. What else? Well, we enjoyed a beautiful backpacking trip in southern Colorado over Labor day, and have been constantly remarking on our newlywed status. At least, Jonathan has. We hope peace, prosperity and compassion touch all of you in the coming year. Love, Jonathan and Paige

Wild-Machen Yearly letter, 2004  

Our first post-marriage Christmas letter!

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