Monday, February 14, 2011

Day 14

Happy Valentine’s day to all of you, whom I love!

I’m not sure if Valentine’s Day is a holiday tradition here in Argentina or not, but I’ve been watching Keren knit wooly hearts this week as part of her creative endeavors, and we decided to make the day something special here on the farm. It’s the most beautiful day, and we are diligently making mortar and building as much as we can while it’s dry.

The nights have been cool, and though I fall asleep sprawled out on top of my sleeping bag, inevitably I end up zipping it up at some point in the middle of the night. It feels so refreshing to sleep outside on crisp nights. Marcelo said that when the sky is clear it gets cooler here because the clouds aren’t trapping in the heat of the day, like a big blanket over the valley. It got quite hot today though, and sifting through the clay-rich subsoil is a bit like sifting brick because it has been so wet and then dried hard. But still, it’s going quickly compared to last week, and it feels good to be building.

Here is the subsoil pile (on the left) that we sift through in the making of our mortar. On the left is the shade cloth over one of the gardens:

During lunch today Kim and I made a vegan Valentine’s day surprise cake (which was moist and delicious with cinnamon, ginger, clove, and cardamom that I pounded into powder in the mortar and pestle) to share with everyone after siesta.

She also made a delicious pink juice with fresh squeezed oranges and the sugar fermented roselle and water. Our cake was festooned with coconut hearts, thanks to the help of a heart stencil I made from a piece of cardboard out of the burn pile.We started the day today with yoga, just before 6am. Somehow, starting the day this way always feels like a dream, the ideal sort of way to live. After an hour of this gentle yet directed movement, I feel energized, refreshed, and very peaceful. And it makes it even better to be doing it with people I love that share in those same feelings. Kim begins and ends the session with the most beautiful bell tones from her singing bowl… something I’d like to hear more often in my life. I find a lot of joy in the work of yoga. The sun wakes up while we do our sun salutations, and by the end of our hour you can hear the dogs eager on the steps of the shala, excited for their breakfast.

The walk back to the kitchen from our swimming hole in the river:
If you look up, these spiders have their webs above all of our paths during the daytime!
One of our swimming holes in the river... this one is shallow, and it feels wonderful to lie on the rocks and let the water wash over you.
Conan, and one of his favorite napping spots. The butterflies love landing on this mat, and when he's not napping it's also a favorite place to try and catch a snack! (Are you understanding now how this cute, harmless looking little kitten might have earned the name Conan the Barbarian?)

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