Tuesday, November 9, 2010
No trip to Terlingua is complete without a visit to The Field Lab. John Wells started this off-grid, sustainable living experiment about four years ago, and keeps his many followers up to date with the progress via his blog.
We visited John for the first time on the trip last year. He seems to enjoy showing visitors around the place, so we felt comfortable going by for another visit this year. He was home, and expecting us.
There was a lot of progress around the place since last year. The big, new project when we arrived this time was a recently completed dam of a small arroyo on his property. When it ever rains, he is going to have a small, deep lake there.
He wanted to show us a new section of the property, a recently purchased twenty more acres adjoining the the original section, so we all climbed aboard his little dune buggy for the ride over there. A short ride brought us to the edge of the canyon, a little ways downstream from the new dam. This was a beautiful spot, with excellent views of the surrounding mountains, and of the canyon below. He told us that the long term plans called for a couple of guest cabins here, overlooking the canyon. I sure would like to spend some time here when he gets them finished.
Back at the house, we visited for a while more, and talked about the progress of the huge greenhouse there. He was about to start on finishing up the roofing of the greenhouse, then the gutters and tanks of the water catchment system. The greenhouse should be water self-sufficient with the capture and storage of all the water coming off the roof. What an awesome project this is. He's been working on it for a couple years, now. When complete, it should supply him with all the fresh vegetables he can eat, and maybe some left over to sell, or barter.
It was great to see John again. He's such a friendly, upbeat guy. We really enjoy visiting him. Through his blog, we have learned so much about a so many different things. He is a very intelligent guy, and the followers who comment on the blog all contribute so much to the conversation, and supply their own insight and wisdom. Most of us would be hard pressed to keep up with his energy level and persistence, though. We wish we could visit more often, but, until next time, we'll just have to follow along on the blog.