Giving people the space to learn and practice hands on skills is one of the central things at our village.
Last week interns were engaged in many tasks- and as leader of the building program I don’t get to fully observe what the garden team is up to. However, there they were on a sunny afternoon cutting the tall grass on a hillside with scythes.
There’s something about the rhythmic swinging movement that has an old fashioned appeal to me. It takes a while to find that rhythm, and once established the effort becomes easier. I tried and have to admit that I’ll need a lot more practice!

Meanwhile the Natural Building Skillbuilders were working on the Bathhouse: after laying most of the stone foundation the previous week we put in plumbing pipes and floors- or floor bases. The little building is set on a slope and we are stepping the floor levels to match that. This way our composting toilet will be accessed from a lower path on the West side, the shower and washing space has its own doorway from the East. The south wall will include some solar hot water system. Stay tuned for more on that.

Finally on Saturday a Wedding: We celebrated with our friends and danced until late last night to the tunes of the Ecclestons. Some good rhythms there for all to play!

 

Three days and thirteen people and we have a little building. At the end of a workshop I have few words- feeling the satisfaction of the richness of working together and seeing results:

We all look forward to continuing the workshop next Friday for the Body coat!

Some weeks go by quietly without outstanding events. People go about doing their work, no big storm or other weather event happens and suddenly we find ourselves at the end of another seven days.
Maybe I wasn’t part of things so much this week.
You see I have my own design and consulting business here and at this time when the building season is coming close, I try to wrap up my design projects so that I can be free to go outside to build and teach at the end of May.
My office space is visually not connected to the commons- that helps me not to get too distracted by the general activities and comings and goings. It is located at the north side of the Art Studio and looks out onto the wetlands and to the West overlooks the new garden area. Working in a natural building surrounded by the sounds of nature is something I appreciate every day.
Add to that the fact that I don’t have any travel time to work and suddenly there’s space to give work time to the general operations of the ecovillage.

A contributing factor to the general quiet here was that a few of the men from our group went to a Warrior training of the Mankind Project this weekend. In community that means those who are left behind pick up the slack where necessary.
We’re happy when they return: nurtured by the work and deeper connection to each other. And with that I direct my attention to my partner who just arrived.

It’s just too tempting to pick up the weather topic again today. A big storm kept people a bit on edge for a few days now, causing widespread power outages all over Vancouver Island on Friday, and bringing rain and hail and heavy, gusty winds.
Not enough to scare the Easter bunny away though- this morning the children went on a scavenger hunt on the land and found baskets of treats.
And we’ve been eating little chocolate eggs all week in anticipation…do we really need an excuse to eat chocolate?

Talking about eggs: This morning I noticed a chicken squawking loudly in the storage shed right next to the Art Studio: sounded like it just laid an egg.
In the afternoon I investigated and sure enough: a dozen or so eggs were laid there behind some buckets.

While one program is finishing up (the permaculture landscaping that’s been happening all winter) it’s been high time for summer program applications this week: The Natural Building Skillbuilder attracts people from many backgrounds who want to get a broad basic training in our community setting. Now we’ll conduct interviews and meet people so everyone can be well prepared for the May start.

Those who have been working on the winter program are hoping for a “spring break” , a couple of weeks away perhaps, to recharge and turn towards summer.