Friday, October 24, 2008

First week on Finca Ipe

we decided to stay in the little town of Orosi and take spanish lessons. They were intensive and after a week we were speaking much better. Beth is doing much better and we´re working hard on the farm now. Farm life is good. We´ve been here for a week now doing odd jobs around the farm in the mornings. Getting up at 5 or earlier is getting easier and easier. So far our jobs have included turning 25 foot long compost piles, cleaning out a water tank, hacking of dead leaves from banana trees with a long piece of bamboo with a blade on the end, and probably the most difficult and most important task for the farm that we´ve done so far was building a bamboo gate for the driveway. Beth and I did it solo and we´re really proud of it. The gate has a thick rectangular bamboo frame held together with screws and that was given to us. We were asked to make the bamboo support beams (5 in all that had to hold up the gate). The catch was that we couldn´t use any screws. So we measured our bamboo, cut it, and then used a hack saw and chisels to carve out each end so that it would fit snuggly between the horizontal frame pieces. Took us about 10 hours over two days. The next thing to do is cut down palm fronds and weave them in between the vertical supports and then mount some wheels before somehow carting the whole thing up the hill and putting it in place. I have never worked so hard physically, but surprisingly I´m feeling good and enjoying the process of things. I had no idea how strong bamboo was!

We´re in the city for the day just running some errands which revolve around finding second hand american clothing that we can destroy working on the farm, the internet, and getting peanuts to make homemade peanut butter. And it just occured to me that maybe a snake bite kit would not be a bad idea either. Last night during dinner a snake of an unknown species (not totally unknown, just to us. we didn´t discover a new species or anything ), at least a meter long was crawling on the bamboo support beneath the tin roof just above the kitchen sink. Oh, did I mention that the house we´re staying in on Finca Ipe doesn´t have front or side walls. The bedrooms do, but the whole house is pretty much outdoors and it´s beautiful. Lots of bamboo and a fantastic feel. Anyways, that should help you to imagine how the snake was moving around so freely. So we flung it down the hill and finished dinner. I asked Derek the owner of the house if they usually killed snakes that came inside. And he was like ¨usually´´, but this one didn´t look threatening enough. Ahhh!

1 comment:

jamie said...

Its so great to know that ya'll are doing good and enjoying costa rica while at the same time working hard, but be very careful about the snakes there. Costa Rica is home to some of the most venomous and at the same time fascinating snakes in the world. Having a snake bite kit on hand would be a wise idea. Anyway enjoy it there and i hope you get a chance to go see more of the rainforests and especially the la paz waterfalls.