We broke ground the second week of March. It’s been, well… It’s been real. Don’t get me wrong- it’s exciting- but digging has been hard going, what with a small hill to move and enough rocks to build yet another hill. We finally hit foundation level last week though, and really that’s not all that long considering there’s just been the two of us, a couple of shovels, and a pickaxe.
We’re on to trenching, and if digging was a chore before I don’t even know how to describe it now. The ground is ridiculously hard and weather has not been cooperating. We had several days of weather warnings in the last week, with winds ranging from 60 km to 100 km/hr. And snow- plenty of snow. Thankfully it melted fairly quickly but they’re forecasting another 20 cm will fall in the next 24 hours.
I’m finding some days (like today) a little discouraging. Hard to find the motivation when you can only scrape the earth bit by bit into a wheelbarrow. It makes for a long day when the progress is so slow. But I remain determined, and committed, so an off day here or there won’t throw me off for long. Shane, in the meantime, is focusing his efforts on our rocket stoves. We’ll require three in total- one for mass heating, one for water heating, and one for cooking. All variations on the basic model that will have to be built and tested prior to the actual build- so he’s got his work cut out for him. When I start to feel badly about all the digging I’m doing, I remind myself I could be stuck with the heating systems which seem- to me- to be a worse assignment.
So that’s where we’re at. Sorry so long between updates. It’s a busy time. For those of you interested in steadier (albeit short) updates and the opportunity to interact with other natural builders, please see our Facebook page and sign up. The address is http://www.facebook.com/pages/New-Brigden-Alberta/Canadian-Dirtbags/128912733998?ref=mf