Our last event of 2013 was a fabulous night with musician extraordinaire Paul Robert Burton whose concert provided a frame for the documentary 'Fractured Country" . Paul provided first hand stories of farmers and families affected by CSG he had met as he supported activists, mums, dads and grandparents at blockades around the country with his music. Our camp kitchen transformed into a stage as we sat under the stars, inspired by both the music and the ordinary people trying to protect the Land. A fitting acknowledgement of our Care for Country on the Solstice.
The first house completed at BIndarrabi!!
Carol & Doone were thrilled to have a bed and fridge in their new house to celebrate Christmas day with fresh figs from their tree for breakfast.
The house was completely built using the solar power from their stand-alone 3.5 KW PV tracking system. It is North facing with a polished concrete floor for thermal mass, 6ml e-glass windows, composting toilet, limestone walls with extra insulation in both roof & walls. In spite of the louvers in the cupola not being wired yet (they are electrically operated) to help with venting hot air, on a 39 degree day it was 10 degrees cooler inside the house. Definitely happy with that!. The in-ground 10,000 gallon concrete tank also doubles as a patio area. The house is designed for minimum maintenance and to Bushfire Attack Level (BAL) 29.
In the first week of January we had the fire trails behind the house sites put in and the all-weather road to the proposed fire-safe house from both precincts completed. It has been a busy start to the year!
January Long Weekend saw much progress being made on our new Nature Loo composting toilets for the campground. We should be able to have the Grand Opening (?) at our Feb gathering :) We also added more concrete to the rock ford over to Harvest Field to smooth out a few bumps and a mighty effort was made to clear all of the Groundsell weed. Next year will be very easy to clear any regrowth.
On Saturday night one of our Friends, Dr. Delton Chen gave an interesting presentation on a new project he is working on to provide a digital currency to be used as payment for companies who reduce CO2 emissions. This removes the stigma of a 'tax' and is not political. We wish him all the best in birthing his idea.
And...... it is blackberry season! We all now value the effort put into gathering a bucket of blackberries ! Kathy kindly converted many of them to blackberry pikelets for morning tea. Absolutely delicious! Sorry there is no pic. We ate them all before I thought of it!
However I did get a picture of our Bunya Nut efforts. A Friend brought us a Bunya Nut so we of course Googled a recipe for Bunya Nuts and found a recipe for a cake that we approached with some trepidation. It was delicious!!!!!!!!!
First we had to crack the nut open, a special technique of throwing it on the ground, then boiling the nuts for around 3 hours until the kernals split open. We then de-hulled the kernals and they were ready for our recipes. The kernals are a little like a chestnut/potato mix and are 9% protein with the rest complex carbohydrates.
As well as the cake we kept some and stir-fried them with garlic and ginger. Very moreish....great bush tucker!!
Lets take a breath and see what the rest of the year brings!
We had a very promising reception with our presentation to the Tenterfield Shire Council on July 24th. The councillors even almost got to the point of a vote, however some were keen to see the property before making a final decision, which is quite reasonable. Hence we are slashing and tidying and dusting off our scone recipe before their visit on August 15th :) All going well, it will go back to council on the 28th for their decision and then....
WE WILL CELEBRATE!!!!!!!!!!! All prayers and good wishes happily received for those two dates.
September Equinox could be a fantastic celebration!
Wow! What a great time we had on the 5th & 6th of November 2011 at Bindarrabi.
The photo below of Nikki 'Catching Sunbeams' epitomised the joy and enthusiasm felt by all on the weekend as we explored the land and the layout of the house sites. The weather was perfect. Not too hot for walking and delightful for wandering down the creeks with lovely clear skies for star watching at night.
AND......four far-sighted couples are seriously interested with one couple signing on the dotted line to reserve their site!
It was very encouraging to have such a positive response on our first weekend and to know there is an increasing groundswell of folks wanting to 'Live the Solution'. I was excited by the diversity of people that came with different skills which demonstrated how easily a village could grow from a common vision.
We look forward to meeting more passionate folks on Dec 3rd & 4th for our next weekend.