Saturday, January 2, 2010

Welcome 2010

2009 was quite a year. On December 19, 2008 we left our friends and our trailer at Koinonia Farm and drove our 4X4 truck from Southern Georgia to my parent’s place in Taber, Alberta - barely dodging blizzards on the way. It was wonderful spending Christmas with my parents, and with Trevor, who we hadn’t seen since leaving for Koinonia in late August. After spending Christmas with my parents, we spent time in Calgary with various friends until New Years. January 1st, 2009 we pointed the truck West and made our trek to the Pacific coast. There had been a large and unexpected snow fall over most of BC, leaving unstable snow conditions in the mountains. Traffic stopped while highway crews fired artillery shells to force avalanches so the snow could be cleared before traffic proceeded. It took a couple of hours, and it gave us a chance to appreciate the beauty of a calm winter night that we would have otherwise missed.

On January 2nd we arrived in Vancouver. The city was almost paralyzed with deep snow and we truly needed the 4X4 truck just to get Trevor back to his apartment near UBC. Later that evening we took the last ferry across to Vancouver Island, drove from the ferry terminal and across the Malahat pass. We arrive at our long-time friend’s house about midnight. The next morning we pulled into our driveway at our new house in Cobble Hill. Our pond was frozen over and about a meter of snow covered the ground. All our possessions were packed in boxes in the back of our truck, in sheds behind the house or piled ceiling high in two bedrooms at the back of the house. We unloaded the truck, lit a fire in the wood stove and began the process of re-assembling our lives.

The rest of 2009 was full of transitions. Krista had to get back into high school. Kailee started volunteering at OUR (One United Resource) ecovillage in February, then moved into a tent on-site from April to August while she completed an internship in sustainable food production. In September she moved into residence at UBC in Vancouver. Trevor spent over 6 months in Peru doing research for his master's project.

As for me and Jan, we have been spending a major part of our time trying to figure out the details of this new phase of our lives. Our garden was very successful, providing more than 100 meals over the course of the year. Our fruit trees also did very well, but we have lots to learn about managing the harvest. Our first solar pv panels went up in the Summer and we are still experimenting with renewable energy/energy conservation at home. Jan completed a natural-building workshop at the ecovillage and has returned to her university studies. I've completed courses on energy efficiency, solar thermal and communication/conflict management. Looks like I will be accepting some responsibilities at OUR ecovillage and with the BC Sustainable Energy Association in 2010.

2009 was clearly a year of transitions - It will certainly be interesting to see what 2010 brings.

PS. The photos show our house in January 2009 and January 2010 - what a difference a year makes!

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