How We Work - with Iso Rabins

Welcome to the first episode of How We Work! In this episode, I'm excited to introduce my very first guest, Maria Finn who's an extraordinary forager, chef, and author living on a houseboat.

Maria and I explore the fascinating journey of living beyond traditional labels. We discuss the challenges of feeling like "impostors" in our respective fields and the quest to balance conformity with our diverse passions.

We dive into the world of foraging, where Maria shares her expertise in gathering food from nature. From the joys of exploring wild edible ingredients to the challenges of mastering the art of foraging, we discuss how nature fuels our creativity and connection.

Our conversation also touches on the connection between psychedelics and mental well-being. We share personal stories of microdosing psychedelics and how these experiences can unlock new dimensions of personal growth and creative expression.

In a world that often values conventional career paths, Maria and I emphasize the importance of nurturing creativity in all its forms. We discuss the undervaluation of creative contributions and the enriching possibilities that arise when embracing diverse creative avenues.

I hope you enjoy this episode! Stay tuned for more inspiring conversations on "How We Work"
You can learn more about Maria and her adventures at:

Learn more about Maria: 
Flora & Fungi Adventures:
Maria Finn:
Maria's Book: Forage. Gather. Feast
Maria's Instagram: @maria_finn1

Connect with us:

What is How We Work - with Iso Rabins?

A podcast about what we do, why we do it, and what we think. Explore the interesting and unique ways people create their lives, from artists and entrepreneurs to fishermen and wild salmon counters. Discover what they've learned along the way, both in their work and in their lives. Hosted by Iso Rabins

. Maria: A lot of the indigenous people
are trying to fight against this.

And so, you know, this is where we
come together and we can come together

as environmentalists and as people who
kind of make their living from the land

and as people who steward the land is
there can be a sustainable relationship

between humans and ocean and land.

We just can't have corporate profits.

Iso: Very well said.

Thank you.

Very well said.

Thank you.

Shure MV7-13: Hey, my name is.

Lisa Rabins and welcome to the first
episode of how we work a podcast.

I'm starting to basically interview
people I think are interesting.

And learn what I can from them.

And hopefully help you
learn along the way.

, this first episode, I have a
really great talk with Maria fin.

Who someone that I feel like I
actually have a lot in common with.

Um, she is a forger and chef and.

Lived in Alaska counting wild salmon.

Um, she's a book author.

She's about to have a cookbook come out.

Um, and she's also written for newspapers.

And I myself have also done a lot of
stuff in the food and foraging world.

Um, I own a business called forage SF.

That I started in 2009.

That has kind of gone
through a lot of iterations.

I used to do underground
dinners with wild forage food.

So I actually cooked.

These hundred person, eight
course tasting menu dinners.

Um, and I didn't have any backgrounds,
, as a professional chef at all.

Um, What for just F does now
is teaches forging classes.

So it takes people like mushroom foraging
and seaweed, foraging, and clamming

and crabbing, and just kind of like.

More traditional skills, really
trying to get people out into nature.

, I've also done some writing
on my own, but also a couple

articles, you know, not too much.

, and I own a place called forage
kitchen, which is an incubator kitchen

for small startup food companies.

So that's kind of all the same
that I do a lot of things.


I kind of have this complex about
not being the master of anything.

Um, You know, I'm certainly
not the best forger.

It's something I really love to do.

It's why I started a company
about it, but I'm not a botanist.

I couldn't point out every plant and
every tree in the forest, you know, other

people teach the classes for my company.

Um, like I was saying, I'm not a
professional chef by any means.

Um, but I used to charge people a hundred
bucks a head to eat the food I made.

Um, So it's been this kind of
journey where I think what I'm

really good at is following things.

I'm excited about kind of
creating projects, inspiring

people to be part of them.


But the whole way, I feel like.

I'm not really the best at
any of these things, you know?

Um, and I think that what I've really
come to terms with as my career has

progressed is that I don't need to
be, um, And I think that's really,

what's great about Maria too.

You know, she's made a
whole life for herself.

And I think that's really, what I want to
discuss on this podcast is talk to people

who have just done it differently, right?

To really shed light on the fact that if
you want to be a chef, you don't have to

go to culinary school, then pay your dues
for 20 years to be a line cook somewhere.


And that's a totally reasonable way to
go about it, but you don't have to that.

You can kind of like do things your own
way and make your own way in the world.

So she's a really great
first guest for this podcast.

Uh, and we talk about a
lot of really great things.

, Of course not being the master of
anything is a really great subject

that's near and dear to my heart.

Um, we also talk about microdosing,
which is something that I am a fan of.

I actually started a small business,
educating people on microdosing

because I had a really positive
experience myself with it.

Um, Was having kind of anxiety
and depression during COVID, you

know, I think like a lot of us
were and started microdosing and.

Like really came out of it.

Um, started being a lot more creative.

Started playing the guitar
or drawing a lot more.

Um, so that's something we talk a
lot about and about psychedelics

generally too, as they relate to
mental health . Um, because it's

something that I am personally really
interested in and excited about.

for my own kind of personal work, but
also just for society at large, I think

we have this like crazy mental health.

Crisis going on, right?

Like everyone is sick in some way.


The reality is that the tools we
have here just aren't working, right?

Maybe they'll dumb down the pain a little
bit, but like, it's not a solution.

Like people are not getting
cured as far as I can tell.

And I really feel like psychedelics
are a forefront and really

could help a lot of people.

So it's something I'm personally
want to learn a lot more about.


So I really hope you enjoyed the
conversation and thank you so much

for listening to this podcast.

Um, this is a personal project that I've
been wanting to do for a really long time.

And I've just really
been loving the process.

Um, I've been really enjoying the
conversations I've been having

with people and just loving the
kind of nuts and bolts of editing.

And I'm just really excited to
create a community of people who.

Like me and like Maria are kind of trying
to make a different way for themselves

in their lives and in the world.

And maybe this can be a place that
can help people feel better about it.

Maybe it can make them feel like they're
not so alone in what they're doing.


Cause I think when you're making your
own way, it's really easy to feel

like maybe you're doing it wrong.

But you're not.

So, thank you so much and enjoy the talk.

Iso: So Maria, thank you, uh,
once again for being on my podcast,

being the first guest on my podcast.

Um, yeah, so can you just, uh, kind of
start by telling me a bit about yourself?

Maria: Um, sure, yeah.

I live in what you're up to.

Sausalito on a houseboat.

And yet I've been here about 15 years now.

I have a truffle dog, two cats,
a little native oyster garden.

And during, uh, and I, I've
worked as a writer, uh, author,

journalist, and a chef in, you know,
I moved to Alaska for nine years.

Were, or nine seasons really, where
I was a commercial fisher woman.

I worked for the Alaska
Department of Fish and Game.

Uh When I was in Alaska, uh, for fun,
we would go out and we would forage.

uh We could go and drop crab
pots or shrimp pots or dig clams.

We could pick raspberries, get
fiddlehead ferns and stingy nettles

in the spring and, you know, just
phenomenal wild salmon and halibut, uh,

portini in the summer, you know, so,
so it was just, it was a, a lot of fun.

And then I worked for fish and game
out in Western Alaska in the bush.

And for two summers I ran a, uh,
set sites on the Yukon Delta.

So for to fish and game, they wanted to
wanna know how many fish are going up.

You can take a scale off of a salmon
and it has rings on it, and you can

read it sort of like rings on a tree.

It tells you how old the salmon is.

How long it lived in freshwater,
how long in saltwater.

Um, and so we would, we would do
this and sometimes the fish would

die in the net and so I would take
them to the UIC fish drying camp.

So the UICs are the
indigenous people there.

And they would, especially the
older people, had fish drawing

camps up and down the Yukon Delta.

Um, so, so they had next level wild,
wild food, but they, you know, they,

about 70% of their food is wild and
their, their incomes are quite low.

Um, and so, so this, this food,
especially salmon, I mean salmon,

the word, their word for food
and salmon are the same thing.

Um What they did with subsistence.

What I do is foraging, you know,
I'm not trying to live off the land.

I'm just trying to have a connection with
the water in the land through wild food.

Um, and so I think it's inherently
a need and a want we have.

You know?

And, and that's another fun part
about just taking walks in the city.

Um, I just let a, a walking
tour, golden Gate Park and we

didn't eat anything because it's
illegal, but, and that's its own

Iso: subject, but did, , we
didn't eat anything.

Is that in quotes?

Well, yeah.

Had air

Maria: quotes.


No, I was leading it.

I didn't wanna get on,
I've done those walks.

Right, right.

We're gonna Well, but I was like

okay, there's one thing that's
eating invasive blackberries.


But, you know, I'm like, don't eat,
uh, the roses from the rose garden.

You know, that's a good,

Iso: yeah.

Like, feel like that's

Maria: a good line to draw, right?

Like, you know, you gotta, you
kinda have to pick and choose.

But, but, but there are people in
this world, I think there's two

kinds of people, uh, those who
follow the rules no matter what.

And those who don't follow rules, it
seem to be sort of random rules made by

bureaucrats for no particular reason.

Iso: yeah I think, yeah, I think we're on
the same page about that kind of stuff.

Like it feels like there is a
lot of minors lat in Golden Gate

Park and I think I have the same
approach that you have, right?

Like I never have thought or try
to push people to the idea that.

You should go out into nature
to pick everything to survive.


Like it's just like, it's just like,
basically, basically like, it's very,

very hard to do around here anyway.

Maria: Yeah.


You would go, you would be very thin.


You'd be very thin.


And, you know, and that is, I think
the basis of, of this, this crux

of the issue is can human beings
be in nature and not mess it up

and not only not mess it up mm-hmm.

Be, but be a regenerative part of that.

And that's, you know, I think,
uh, we talked about braiding

sweet grasp before, you know?


And that is one reason I loved that book.

And she has the knowledge as a scientist
and the wisdom as an indigenous person,

the author Robin, uh, Wal Kimmer is, is
that yes, yes, they can, you know, but it

requires being educated about it, knowing
how to do it and having access to it.

Um, and so if they cut access off for
people from nature, how are we ever

gonna know how to, how to live with it?

Iso: Yeah, no, that's a good point.

Um That book had quite an effect on me.

I really, I thought it was really amazing,
just like very beautiful about, like,

it's kinda like when you were talking
before about, , the indigenous folks you

lived near up in Alaska, just like that,
just to have that level of connection

with nature and like that, like, like
that depth of relationship, you know?

Like I didn't grow up with it.

, I didn't go out with my
grandparents doing this stuff.

Um, so it's all like, super new to me.

And, and the excitement and the
connection is, is, and the learning

about it is something that really
inspires me, and that's like what I

try to communicate to other people too.

Um, but just to have that like
intergenerational familiarity,

um, and relationship is just
like, yeah, it's very beautiful.


I was very jealous.

Maria: Yeah.

Um, but yeah.

And you know, I know some mushroom
hunters and, you know, a lot of it,

same thing with commercial fishermen
and mushroom, professional mushroom

hunters is that like they have time
in the woods and time on the water and

they have a very deep well of knowledge.


You know, 20, 30 years into it.

Um, and they're non-indigenous.

They don't have the ancestral and
they don't have the same perspectives

and the same sort of take on it.

But, you know, I, uh, there's a mushroom
hunter, John Getz AB been Oregon and his

professional matsutake and truffle hunter.

And he has been arguing for a
long time against clear cutting.

A lot of the indigenous people
are trying to fight against this.

And so, you know, this is kind of, you
know, where we come together and we

can come together as environmentalists
and as people who kind of make

their living from the land and as
people who steward the land is there

can be a sustainable relationship
between humans and ocean and land.

We just can't have corporate profits.

Iso: Very well said.

Thank you.

Very well said.

Thank you.

Yeah, no, I really like that.

No, I mean, I think
that's the thing, right?

It's like, I think that that's like,
that's what I've always focused on.

It's kinda like my mission in a lot
of ways, like with my dinners or with

the walks we do, is, is to help people
get a connection with nature, right?

Because like when you have a connection
with nature, you're going to protect it.

And whether that's like you're a
fisherman or a mushroom forager, or

you're just kinda like a weekend warrior.

Like you hear about this stuff happening,
you hear about the clear cuts at

your like favorite mushroom spot and
like you're gonna fight to stop it.

But if you just go on, like
you've, you just kind of like

look at it like through glass.

Like you don't have
that same like emotional

Maria: connection.

Right, exactly.

It's like, you know, if you eat haring
outta the San Francisco Bay, like then

if something happened on the bay, if
there was, you know, it wasn't being

protected oil spill on the bay, that
would be polluting our food source.

So it's this really visceral connection
to our, to our food, to our waterways.

So that's exactly, it is like take
ownership and stewardship of your

local areas and, and, and going out
and knowing it through wild food

is a really intimate connection.

I mean, even more so I think
than like kayaking or hiking.

Iso: Yeah.

It's an amazing thing.

I mean, it really, everyone should do it.

It's just really so pleasant.

I Love being in the woods.

It's just like being in the woods and it's
like be, it's like a hike with purpose.

Oh, exactly.

Maria: You know, bonus.

And then you come home and you cook
your porcini and I know it's delicious.

That's the thing,

Iso: you know?

And it's, that's just a bonus.



Like, even if you don't find
anything, it's like the best

day that I had all month.


And then if I find something, it's
like, oh, this is like a, a cool little

fun thing I also get to do to remember
this amazing experience I had today.

Maria: Um, as far as like what, you know,
the benefits of overtime microdosing.

Iso: Yeah, totally.

I mean, I had a really great
experience with Microdosing.

Um, I started doing it during
Covid, uh, just, you know, I was

like a little anxious, a little
depressed, a little like isolated,

you know, just like a lot of us were.

Um, and I started microdosing and
like I started playing the guitar.

I started drawing more, like spending
a lot more time, like being like, just

like focusing on creative pursuits.

Um, and I found that, that
stayed on even after I stopped.

Um, I think it's really, it's like, I
think it's like deceptively effective,

um, you know, cuz you think like you're
supposed to take like a sub, like a,

um, I'm losing the word sub perceptual,
like sub perceptual dose, right?

So like by definition you're
not supposed to feel it.

And so people think like, oh,
that's not doing anything.

But I think it's really effective.


And I started doing, I started a
little business teaching people how

to microdose, um, Just to, because
I wanted to share it with people.

I was like, whoa, this is
a crazy, this is amazing.

Um, you should really try this.

Maria: Right, right.

Well, and I mean, and that's that, it's
funny because I do think that like there

is this sort of, uh, gray area that as
a forager you kinda live in, you know,

to survive covid, a lot of people had
to live in, you know, like everybody

started, or not everybody, a lot of
people started like cooking out of their

house and selling their bread or selling
meals to neighbors or, you know, kind of

figuring out like, okay, how are we gonna
survive through get, get through this?

And, you know, I have to say, uh,
personally, um, I had an older brother

who had P T S D and was an alcoholic and,
um, was being treated and depression.

He was being treated at a VA hospital
in Texas and he ended up committing

suicide outside of it and, mm-hmm.


And a part of that was, um, he
was going through a very, it, it

was in a really, really bad shape.

And I offered to take him
to Peru to do ayahuasca.

You know, I was like, mm-hmm.

I think this is the only thing
that can help at this point.

Um, and cuz my brother had,
he always was troubled.

It was big.

It was big stuff.

And it, it was like, it, you know,
microdosing would not have done the trick.

It was like mm-hmm.

He needed to go to the jungle for 10 days
and have shaman sit on his ass, you know?


And get those demons out into the jungle.

Um, but he wouldn't do it.

The rest of my family was
like, oh, that sounds weird.

Well, the VA hospital was
mailing him jars of Vicodin.

Right, wow.

Uh, which is standard practice.

And then he did, he killed himself.

Uh, he, he didn't die right away.

He was flown to a burn
unit in Lubbock, Texas.

Uh, and, and so, you know, I, I do,
I think that there is something, um,

very powerful happening, and I really
also believe, and I know you've had

experience with Ayahuasca, that these
drugs are gonna help awaken people into

how do we live on planet earth in a way
that we're not, uh, killing ourselves

and everything else on the planet.

Iso: Mm-hmm.


No, for sure.

Um, but yeah, I think it's like,
I think for me, I mean, even with

my, you know, my career has been
in, has been about connecting with

nature in a lot of ways, right?

Um, like foraging cook
with forage ingredients.

But recently, like my experience Yeah.

With, with Ayahuasca has really,
it has really, it's changed my

relationship to nature in a way
that I'm still figuring out.

You know?

Like it really does connect you in
a way that is so much deeper, right?

Um, and I, yeah, I mean, I lo I love that
this stuff's getting legalized, you know?

I mean, I think I.

I think that there are so many people,
just like you're talking about, I

mean, that is like a super sad story.

Like, I'm sorry to hear that.

Yeah, and like I think there's so many
people in these situations that are

like struggling with some kind of pain.

And Oh, everybody, society,

Maria: everybody is struggling
with some kinda pain.

I'm into it.

Iso: Yes.


You know, but like this kind of
deep, yeah, this deep, deep stuff.

I'm like, yeah.

Like there's just no answer.

You know?

No one really has an answer
except to like, to sedate you.



And it's, and the stuff
isn't an experience

Maria: actually.

Yeah, yeah.

And it's, it's not, you know,
it's not a magic bullet.

It's like, I've been, God, I've been doing
ayahuasca for 12 years now, you know?

Um, and it's, you, you have to
come out and make changes in your

life, and sometimes you don't.

You have to keep reliving the
same lesson over and over again.

But I do think it's, it's just a
remarkable tool of, you know, I, I don't

know, life is still always gonna have
challenges and that's okay, you know,

and there's always gonna be pain and
disappointment and, and all of that.

But I think that, um, I think these
things help with resiliency to it.

I, I, a friend of mine is a therapist
and she works with ketamine and she

works, uh, with at-risk people that they
get, I think they can do the treatment.

Um, it's in the East Bay
and it's like $35 right?

For, for that with therapy.

And she said, you know, they return to
these lives that are still very stressful.

Uh, poverty is stressful,
you know, in this country.

And, and she said, yeah, but they
have developed a resiliency, uh,

to, to the stress in their lives.

And, and I think that
that's one part of it.

I think another part of it
is the complexity and the

richness of life, right?

That, um, I feel less afraid of dying.

I mean, I'm not sick and dying, so
I, but, you know, I, I feel like it's

probably a really beautiful thing.

And I also think I am more and more
valuing beauty and awe and trying to make

space for those two things in my life.

And I think that is available to
everyone, to everyone who can walks

outside and looks up at the moon at
night or sees a sunrise or sunset

or a flower that comes into bloom.


Iso: Yeah.

I mean, and on that point, like
the, like doing things that you're

not necessarily an expert at.

it's something that I'm curious
about you, cuz it's something that I

struggle with myself is like, kind of
not, not feeling like I'm necessarily

the master of anything, right?

Like, I'm kind of like
a jack of all trades.

Like I'm not really a chef.

Like I'm not really a businessman.

Um, like I'm not a botanist by any means.

Like, I don't know every
plant in the forest.

Even close to it.

Um, I'm, I'm just interested in a
lot of different things, you know,

and like, and so it's, it's, it kind
of makes me uncomfortable sometimes.

I'm like, what am I,
like, what's my thing?

What's my, like, one
thing I'm really good at?

And it, and it seems like with you
too, I mean, you just do so many

things and it seems like you do so
many things really, really well.

But like, I wonder if you ever struggle
with that kind of, that discomfort.

Maria: Oh, all the time.

You know, and I, you know, I don't even,
like, I make a good part of my living,

cooking professionally, but I, I hate to
use the word chef cause I just uhhuh Yeah.

I'd be like,

Iso: I could never use chef
for myself so uncomfortable.

But, you

Maria: know, but I have a chef, I
have a chef's jacket that I wear.

Uh, uh Yeah, it gives you
authority like that, that, you

know, but I didn't, oh, yeah.

You know, I didn't st anywhere.

And I, I was doing an article on Matthew
Kamer up at, uh, Harbor House Inn in

Elk, which is, he's just off the charts.

Frigging talented, phenomenal,
uh, perfectionist, you know.

Uh, but I was doing, uh, an article about
the disappearing kelp forest, and I was

staging with him for the day to do that.

But we went out foraging and,
uh, we got some sea urchin

and some seaweed and stuff.

And he has, you know, he's worked
in Japan, he's worked everywhere.

He paid his dues.

And I, I did, I was sitting here going.

I'm not even telling him I cook, you know?

You know, um, absolutely
not gonna even mention that.

Um, and I think for Stae, he just
had me clean the seaweed, you know,

I didn't want him to see my terrible
knife skills, low stage video of that.


Um, my books haven't been terribly
successful and, you know, and so, um,

but I think it's the same thing I,
what I love about being able to do

all this, uh, is that, uh, it, it's
just this natural curiosity, right?

Um, and that you get to follow
this and always be learning.

It's a little stressful to
always be learning on the

job and not have mastered it.

And, uh, and, and I also think there's
certain people like us, uh, you, myself,

like we are pretty much unemployable.

Yeah, in a corporate setting,
you know, it's very true.

Iso: Yeah.

But also like there's something, yeah,
I mean, cuz I fantasize about it too,

honestly, like getting a job and just
the like, how relaxing it would be

just to have like one thing to do.


And I

Maria: like mostly just have
to show up and then you have

benefits, very specific tasks.


And you would have a retirement.

Iso: Totally.

Um, takes all kinds Yeah, I know.


Maria: all time.

I know.

Yeah, I know.

And, and some people really need
that security and other people

need kind of constant stimulation
and you are who you are, you know?

I, yeah, for sure.

Unfortunately, our society does
not support really, um, creativity,

You know?

It is a crazy how much some people
are like, you could be a great artist,

uh, who's doing quite well, and you're
still making half as much as a mediocre,

uh, person doing coding, right.

In tech.


And, and so I, I think that, like I've
been taught, you've probably been taught

there's something wrong with us, you know,
because we're not out there doing our, our

regular jobs and have the big, you know,
whatever retirement and this and that.

But I'm like, why doesn't our
society support, uh, people that

are a little more divergent?

You know, people that are creative
and people that can, uh, support

community and create community.

Um, you know, if you, we, we talk
about what our values are and

then we look at where does our,
where who look at our pay scales.

So, So it, it's, it's really,
there's certain fields, uh,

that pay very, very, very well.

And then a lot of the other ones, it's,
you know, people can barely survive.

And I know we keep talking about
this in the Bay Area, but you

know, there must be ways, right?

There must be ways to create a diversity
of socioeconomic levels that can

thrive in an area like the Bay Area.

Um, you know, this is part of like
biomimicry living like nature.

The more biodiversity of an
area, the more resiliency it has.

And you get like downtown San Francisco
now, they're probably wishing the

artist, you know, weren't all kicked out.

Iso: Yeah, yeah.

No, it is, it is a,
it's a confusing place.

It's a con, it's a confusing time.

There's like more mo it's like
Barry has like more money than God

and like, you know, more homeless
people than I've ever seen.

It's really sad.

But yeah, no, I mean, I think,
yeah, I think other societies

probably do it a little bit better.

You know, they help support kind of
creative endeavors and I mean, it's

kinda like the patronage system, right?

Like even back in history, it's like
rich people would support artists

because they believed art was something
positive to exist in the world.


Maria: Well, I think, I think, doesn't
seem like we've lost it a little bit.

Theoretically, everybody thinks art
is, is, you know, good, you know,

not everybody, but you know, you'd
say if you, if you pulled people

in the Bay Area, people would be
like, yes, art is important, right?

We like our art galleries.

We like, we like that.

And, but if we look at it, we go,
well, how are we supporting that?

How are, and, and, and you know, when you
go, oh, artist grants, well then what?

You get 10 people a year get what?

20 grand, 10 grand?

You know, that's not, you know, what,
what we need is, we need healthcare,

we need affordable housing, we need,
like, people, you don't get to be a

successful artist right out of college.

It takes years, you know, and, and
it's, I think it's completely fine

and healthy to be doing other jobs
besides your art and that you don't

have to be an artist to be a creative.

Um, there's a lot of things you
can be doing, but like our food

workers, the chefs, like, you know,
there's a lot of people are working

in these kitchens as sous chefs.

They're making maybe 20 bucks
an hour, you know, where are you

living in San Francisco on that?


I mean, and, and, and we know that
people in San Francisco, the Bay Area

value how remarkable our food is.

You know?

And, and people need to be able to work in
kitchens to be able to master their craft.

Um, you know, and so the, so that's it,
I think it really is, is like mastering

a craft or in our cases, um, doing
a whole bunch of different things.


But, but, but there, there kind of
needs to be a, a, a way that people

can, can survive and do that and learn,
and then bridges for other people.

If you're at a job that's soul sucking
for 20 years and you really wanna do

something creative, you know, having that
begin availability for people, you know.

Iso: Yeah, no, definitely be
nice to move that direction.

Yeah, speak.

Well, and speaking of creativity,
you just, uh, finished a new

Maria: book, right?

I did.

Well, it's a cookbook and
we're, tell me about it.

Yes, I'm so excited.

Uh, so it's called, uh, forage Gather
Feast, and it's, um, it's coming down

on Sasquatch books based outta Seattle.

So it's West Coast specific,
so it's California, Oregon,

Washington, and Alaska.

And it is gonna be, it's food from
the water, shoreline from the woods,

and then from urban spaces, so sort
of the flowers and the greens, um,

berries and that kind of stuff.

So we are still shooting it and we are
just, uh, yeah, we're still, it's not

fully fully done, but I'm very excited.

It's gonna come out in
February or March, 2024.

So it's a year out.

Iso: Oh, that's very cool.

That must be such a process.

Maria: It's a, it's an
enormous amount of work.

And this is my, yeah, this
is my fir So much work.

First cookbook.

I have several prose books written.

Yeah, yeah.


But, but the difference for the
cookbook is a, it's a lot of work is

you have to test everything, you know?

Um, and so you have to, and if
you're doing it on forage foods,

sometimes you can't buy the food.

You have to go find the food.


And then test the recipes
and then shoot the recipes.

And so you'll be sort of like,
wait a minute, there were candy

cat mushrooms here yesterday.

They're not here anymore.

Oh, no.

Um, but what's fun is while you're doing
it, you realize like, people are gonna

get this book and not just read it, but
they're gonna make food from it, and then

they're gonna give it to their friends.

And so it's almost this like, three
dimensional experience of a book.

So that part of, actually, of
it is actually kind of exciting

and fun, and it's shot in.

Alaska, uh, LUMY Island,
Washington, and then California.

Iso: And this is all on your website?

Maria: Yeah.

So it's in Flora and Fungi Adventure.

So that's my, that my website, my, my
writing and like moth stories and all that

stuff is on maria, which is Okay.

Uh, my personal website.

Iso: I'd be wanting to go

Maria: to Alaska forever.

Alaska's ridiculous.

You gotta go to Alaska.


It's like North America 200 years ago.

I mean, there's uhhuh, fewer than
a million people live there and

it's three times the size of Texas.


But almost everybody's on the road from
Anchorage down, so, so Uhhuh, you just,

uh, you can get off the road a little bit.

I mean it's just, yeah, it's
really, I mean, I, when I worked on

boats, I remember being on Kodiak
Island and uh, I was standing there

looking out at Schoff Straits and.

Miles and miles and miles of killer
whales were swimming down Chico straits.



And then like Storm Petrols filled the sky
and you're just, you just feel like you're

witnessing this, you know, incredible
sort of this way the world used to be.

, cool.

Well, thank you so much, Maria, for
being game to record this podcast

and for being my first guest.

Um, yeah, it was a great conversation.


Thank you for having me.

And I wish you lots of luck with
the podcast and of course with,

you know, our shared mission of, of
helping to bring people gently into

wilderness and find delicious food, so.



No, I love what you're doing.



Same back at you.

Uh, cool.

All right.

Thank you Iso.

I'll talk to you soon.

Thanks Maria.

Uhhuh, bye.

Shure MV7-15: So there, it was the first
episode of my new podcast, how we work.

I really appreciate you being
here at the nascent stages of

this adventure, and I hope you got
something out of that conversation.

There was so much good stuff there.

Maria is really great.

Uh, I hope if you like this,
you could share it around.

I'm just starting this out.

So it's a huge help to share it with
someone or to leave a review, which

is what every podcast that I've
ever listened to always ends with.

But I really hope that
you'll actually do it.

Because it would be a giant help.

And if you liked this or you want to
talk about it or there's someone you

think should be on it, or you just
want to say hi, Uh, email me ISA.

At how

I just love to hear from
you and thanks again.

And I'll talk to you next time.