Where I live, foraging for food is a bit of a subculture trend. I live in an area known for its mushrooms, and there are many wooded areas. As you can imagine, this leads to an environment ripe for foraging.
A couple of months ago, we noticed some large mushrooms growing on a tree in our front yard. At one point, someone who had apparently driven past our house on several occasions stopped and started admiring the mushrooms.
I’ll be honest, it was a little weird. They neither asked to explore our front yard nor introduced themselves, even while my husband was out front playing baseball with our boys.
He walked over and inquired about their visit, at which point they informed him that the mushrooms on our tree were chicken of the woods mushroom.
Little did we know, we had a plethora of delicacy mushrooms growing on a dead tree on our property. He told us that chicken of the woods mushrooms are kind of a big deal and a popular score for mushroom foragers.
My husband and I know next to nothing about foraging for food, and I really don’t like mushrooms. The fungus growing on the dead tree in our front yard was of little interest to us. Clearly, however, this trio had premeditated plans to take home the fungus growing on our tree, because they arrived with knives and a tray on which to collect the mushrooms.
Once I understood the fancy fungus in my possession, I thought others might be interested in the mushrooms. I offered them up to neighbors in our local Buy Nothing group. Within a matter of hours, several excited members expressed their interest in stopping by for a taste of some chicken of the woods.
Two members of my Buy Nothing group stopped by over the next couple of days and took home large chunks of this delicacy. One of them was even a chef at a local restaurant. He brought the chicken of the woods mushrooms to his restaurant and tried several different recipes with it. Both of the people who took some of these mushrooms were so thrilled about something I thought was kind of gross.
Honestly, that’s one of the best things about Buying Nothing groups. Something I no longer need or own but have no interest in can serve someone else so well. I was ecstatic to bring so much joy to others with something that did nothing for me.
I tell so many people I know about Buy Nothing groups. People probably laugh about the level of passion behind my proposal that they join their local Buy Nothing group or create one themselves. But I’ve been pleasantly surprised by just how useful our Buy Nothing group has been.
Not only do we find joy in gifting things to others, but we’ve picked up or borrowed plenty of useful things for ourselves as well. As I say to everyone else, now go join or start your own Buy Nothing group.