Saturday, June 2, 2012

Sitting in a Cafe. Living in an Earthship.

I am sitting in a cafe.

It is decorated with tin can robots, ancient wood stoves, wood beams and open to the breezes. It would feel like a bar in the bayou of Louisiana, except for the weather. The desert, thermal-heating cycles suck the cool winds from the mountain faces down to the open mesa, breezing through this coffee shop.

Marissa and I have now landed in the Earthship capitol of the world, Taos, New Mexico. Today, Day 02 of Earthships, we found a coffee shop. We are gathering food and supplies to be back on the mesa, taking in a movie, and catching up on some internet.

Where We Are Staying

Click the link at left for more on the model.
We are staying in the first Simple Survival model Earthship home build in the Earthship community (known as the Greater World community locally.) We were blessed to be staying in this unit for several reasons.

First, we are actually able to be alone. For those that know me, you know that besides being extraordinarily outgoing, I also enjoy my privacy. Second, this model is the same model we thought would work with on the island of Hispaniola. We will be able to see what we like about it, what works, and what doesn't. Third, we have the southernmost building on the property. Since all Earthships face the equator (south in the U.S.), we have a view of the open mesa, which is stunning.

The mesa.
To get a perspective on the swing between harsh, blazing heat akin to Luke Skypwalker's home on Tatooine and cold, desert nights, as well as the type of people we are around, check out two videos. The Garbage Warrior and Life on the Mesa. Both of these videos are very informative. The Garbage Warrior (available on Netflix) is a good depiction of Mike Reynolds and the ever-growing community that are Earthshipers. Life on the Mesa (also available on Netflix) is more about the type of people around here. To get an idea of the demographic of Taosites, picture the mash-up of Southwestern, hippie spiritualists fused with off-the-grid government avoiders.

Keep in mind that it is only one small microcosm of people here. Earthshippers are more the type of people that simply know that the current system isn't working and are innovating sustainable-living solutions. The mesa area of Taos is ideal to experiment in both harsh heat and harsh cold.

What Our Time Here Will Look Like

As we are only the 3rd actual Earthship Academy held, the syllabus is ever-evolving. To summarize, each week looks like this:

Monday & Friday: 9a - 4:30p: Working onsite of an actual Earthship Site. (We are building a private owner's Global Model, the high-end version of Earthship.)
Tuesday, Wednesday, & Thursday: 10a - 12p: Class. 12p - 1p: Lunch. 1p - 4:30p: Working on site.
Saturday & Sunday: Off.

Or, for a detailed view:

What We Want From Our Time Here

Our time is packed here. We know that we will learn the ins and outs of Earthships, get our hands dirty from every aspect of it including what its like to live in them.

Aside from making friends with these crazy kids, we also hope to work on our greenhouse to learn about food production and dive into personal study. We have both expressed a desire to have a partially monastic experience. We have plenty of barriers to internet that we could fill that time with reading, praying and study.

We will also take advantage of our time together to refine the vision we have for our time in Haiti and Dominican Republic. We want to be sure to serve the people on the island well, and we know that Earthships will be a solution for many there. It is not the ultimate vision for our work there, but it will be a huge component of it.

Ok. More on this to come. I am still striving to find time to edit our video from the dates so far. Regardless, I wanted to get this update to you guys!

We miss you all, and look forward to hearing from you soon.


Grant & Marissa Nieddu

1 comment:

Yvette said...

Thank you soooo much for the update Grant!!!!!