One of our main goals during this roadtrip is to find out how we want to live one day. Will we keep traveling for the next years or create a homebase someday? And if we choose one place to live will it be in the Netherlands or will we chase the sun? What is best for our child and where is our heart? In which ever way our exploration leads us, we care very much about conscious, sustainable choices. If we want to live in harmony with ourselves, we need to live in harmony with nature.
In order to find inspiration and learn more about this we visit people who live in alternative ways, sustainable projects and communities who are engaged with the things that interest us: eco-building, permaculture, natural parenting, natural energy sources.
The first project we visit this year is called Sunseed. Driving through a scenic semidesert landscape, unique in Europe, we fall under the spell of the pristine mountains that surround us. This feeling is about to be doubled as soon as we're being enthusiastically guided around through Sunseed. The township where it is settled, used to be deserted. Until in the 80-ies a group of sustainable thinkers came and restored the few houses that were there.
Sunseed is a fully off-grid project; there are no gaspipes, the energy is gained from solar panels and water comes from a well. The project's aim is to create and share knowledge through practice about sustainable living. Walking between almond blossoms and orange trees we receive explanation about the ecological food gardens, the compost toilets and the natural water cleaning system. The activities seem to be done in a relaxed pace. There is passion for the work that this lifestyle brings along and since we're not unfamiliar with this way of living, we relate to that passion.
While Tijn follows a cat in the meadow we learn how to make a solarcooker from 'waste' materials. A parabola of mirrors will lead the sun's heat to the middle and prepare a nice meal. Someone is playing beautiful flute music; it's made from the pita plant that grows abundantly here. This place has managed to go back to the basics and create an oasis of deep rooted peace. We feel a rising enthusiasm within us; who knows where we might apply these principles one day.
The terrace hills on which Sunseed is situated are filled with wild flowers and edible gifts from nature. This is the result of non-cultivation. There is so much to learn from nature if we respect her. And that is the base of this community. There is a lot to discover on this little piece of paradise; sweat logde, the mud building, the little paths along the river,... By the time we say goodbye we feel enriched by a boost of inspiration and some great contacts. Which is exactly what we are looking for during this trip. The answer to the question what excites us. Well, definitely the way of learning and living with nature from this place does!
Sending sunseeds and almond blossoms!
PS: If you want to learn more in detail about this project, check www.sunseed.co.uk.