Saturday, May 7, 2011

Home is where the heart is

We just got home a from a holiday in mid north NSW. Blog worlds collided in the real world (Potato Bug) as we went to visit our good friends who moved there from Freo to become self sufficient, sustainable farmer, hillbilly types. It was lovely to reconnect with friends and see how they have fitted so wonderfully into their new life. They are very happy and we are very happy for them (though we still miss them so!). They converted an old dairy into their home and have two calves, chooks, ducks and a veggie garden so far (plus an orchard in the planning stages).
There is heaps of space for the kids to go crazy
and have wicked bonfires that I hope they will remember forever.


We seemed to have lots of time for tea drinking, walking, gardening, knitting and easter pinata making (it's the old double headed rainbow coloured easter bunyip we all know and love, of course).

The property borders state forest


So you will forgive us for contemplating packing up and moving to eden!

In many ways it was a very confronting and confusing holiday. We were constantly weighing up our suburban life to that of our friends and wondering how far they will be able to take their dream and indeed how far we will be able to take our dream of sustainability in the burbs. The main thing they took into account was the fact that the area is predicted to get wetter, while Perth is predicted to get dryer. We did notice a fair bit of wetness, growing and general greenness about the place. Our friends have some challenges too; they have frosts, as well as problems with fungal diseases on their veggies, clay soils and long weekly commutes in to town for supplies.

Here in Perth we are limited by water, sandy soils and on our block we are limited by space (I really do want goats Linda Cockburn style, but this will take some serious lobbying to Adam as well as my neighbours whose garden I will need for said goats). But even so, we really don't know our limits yet.

The more I think about what we want to achieve here the more I see we are limited by time. We could be much more effective gardeners, chook breeders, soap makers, bakers, preservers, aquaponic-ers, composters, cyclists, house refitters, bee keepers and all round super dooper good guys if we had more time. As it is Adam works full time and I'm part time. Eventually we hope to both work part time or less  to free up time for new skills. As for space, well, we have a new and cranking community garden that is about to start work on an orchard and our whole front garden is natives which we could convert to food production. As for water, we have not installed an approved grey water system yet (this is next on the list) and with more time we could water more effectively, use shade and mulch more thoroughly.

So maybe it is just a case of the grass is always greener. But on the other hand, maybe I'm just too emotionally attached to my home to see clearly. I missed my bike and my bellydancers. Home is where the heart is. And thankfully it rained the day before we got home. How wonderful.

And yes, we all had a great Easter!

1 comment:

  1. That Easter pinata rocks!

    Their life sounds pretty amazing - and it sounds like they've done so much so quickly.

    But you would be far too missed around here - sorry, you can't go moving anywhere.