When I was still in Austin, my working name for it was
“Lindheimer Apothecary” but now I think of it as “Berlin Herb Studio”. It’s my dream for how I’d like to focus my life’s work.
It’s based on a place called Wesleyan Potters. From the time
I was about 5 years old until after high school, I took classes there. My
passion was pottery, but they also offer classes in jewelry making and weaving
for adults and various arts and crafts for children. The classes are usually 8
weeks long. A student in an teen or adult class has access to a wholesale shop for
supplies, a storage cubby, one class per week, and then 12 hours per week of
“bench time” when they can go and work on projects independently, using excellent equipment. There
are sometimes workshops, where visiting teachers share something in their area
of expertise. There are also “key members” who have a key to the
building and space for their own equipment. There’s a shop where members sell
their work. And every year there is a winter show and festival, when the whole
place gets rearranged and opened to the public for a few weeks.
I imagine the same thing – but with herbs. It would be a
certified commercial kitchen, with all of the equipment herbalists wish they
had – a grinder, a tincture press, good drying racks, a label printer, a copper
still. We would be able to order our supplies in bulk and save on shipping. We
would build relationships with local farmers to supply us with herbs, and
provide them with a dependable market. We would inspire each other and weave a
web of connection between herbalists. We would offer a cost effective way for
people interested in herbalism to learn and to stock their home apothecaries.
We would create opportunities for budding herbalists to start their own herbal
product business. We would foster a flowering of creativity in our local herbal
arts. We would be multi kulti in action, sharing what we learned from
grandmothers around the world. We would promote sustainable health care. Our shop would offer a dazzling array of herbal
potions, infused with the collective artistry of our beloved Berlin.
I can’t do this alone. I need lots of help. There will be a
lot of paperwork involved, and I don’t want to do it. I don’t know when or
where this plan will happen, but I know I have to tell the world the vision
before it can come true.

Can you see it? Does it dance before your eyes like it does
mine?

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