Saturday, February 2, 2013


On site - idea exchange at the kids cottage  
January 2013
Reflections on Strawbale Studio Internship -        
  3 highlights  

LANGUAGE - learn to speak
During my internship at Strawbale Studio, I learned to speak a new language.  It happened without my realizing it.  Then one night conversation with a stranger turned to building and construction.  Instead of politely listening, nodding at the appropriate places, I began asking questions.  Real questions about foundations, choice of materials, water wicking, and how to prevent it.  He answered my questions and the conversation flowed deeper.  Learning to speak a new language opens up opportunities for human connection that would be otherwise closed.
  That stranger accepted an invitation to attend the monthly full moon potluck, where he was introduced to people that had been speaking his language for a long time.  Plans were made for collaboration with a local artist.  Learning to speak a new language changes the course of human lives.  
 Just one example of the unexpected benefits I experienced during my January at the Studio.

EXPERIENCE - immersion
Living for a month on the property of Strawbale Studio offered the opportunity for immersion.  Every day new experiences presented themselves, no matter how small.  Living on site in an environment of creativity and curiosity, where I found myself walking around with a notebook to jot down the constant flow of information, ideas, and resources.  One never knows who will come by to visit or what activity will take place.  Just some of what I experienced during January 2013:
 - assess available trees for round pole harvest, safe & efficient felling of trees
 - bark removal with draw knife, notching round poles with pull saw and chisels
 - lashing poles with clove hitch and frapping
 - Rocket Stove use and design
 - model making, in-depth design consultations

warm day reed collecting  
I was deeply fulfilled by meeting new people who were interested in many aspects of life.
The connections offered by living with Deanne for a month were endless and varied.  I was able to meet people from diverse backgrounds, experience levels, ages, and geographic home.   They were accustom to interacting with Strawbale Interns and seemed to jump in quickly with friendship, understanding the inherent short time available.  I know I can return to this environment any time and walk into open arms, minds, and hearts.   The monthly Full Moon potluck was a real highlight for me.  There were around 30 people gathered, some old friends, some new to the Studio, all sharing delicious food.   Going around a human circle with introductions and greetings opened the evening to true sharing and connection, uncommon and memorable.

Thank you Strawbale Studio   Thank you Deanne

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