Skip to main content

Aardbol + Arbol = Ardbol

As we were getting used to the idea of going to Spain, our normal life was going on. Maaike had the opportunity to create a food forest in a land owned by the ProRail company. As a rail company they have a lot of land and a portion of it is not in use. During this project she connected local inhabitants to food forest builders. 

At the end of 2020 Maaike asked me to join her on working on our plans for the food forest in Spain. She was learning Spanish and helping realizing the food forest project within her company, while I was focused on my programming work. I replied that because of our kids we could not go to Spain until 2025, at that time five years away. If I would start now it would go too fast, I'm not good at going slow. But she was right that working together was nicer. So we did.

Screenshot of first website made by Maaike
So I too started to read more on food forests and joined online groups, like climate cleanup. Although Maaike progressed fast with her Spanish, in order to talk to (local) governments and other organizations we needed a Spanish speaking person in our team. We already had decided that we would not go for a small house with some trees around it, as some early pension plan, but a real project to show how farming can be done in a sustainable way. 

Hence we needed help. I looked around and met Liselotte, we had a first meeting on 14th march 2021. Again a big stepping stone in our journey. This could very well be the start of our endeavor. First we needed a name. We wanted to help the earth with trees, I noticed that 'aardbol' (Earth, or world globe, in Dutch) and 'arbol' (tree in Spanish) were almost the same, so combining them was easy: Ardbol. some days later we registered the domain names and Ardbol was official.




Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The first week of work

After the transaction we had time to think about what we could do in the village, as now we are the owners. The next option for us to go to Spain was in the autumn holidays. Earlier on we tried to combine it with Spanish classes for the kids, but we couldn’t arrange extra free time from school, so we had to stick to the one week of school vacation. We thought about starting at one of the houses which is in the relative good condition, like getting a door, so we could close it and store stuff there. But we had no electricity or tools as we had no space to keep stuff safe. So we were kind of stuck in a chicken and egg problem. To get out of this we set up a plan to get a container which we could lock. But that would not be there for this vacation. Then Maaike’s parents asked: “Would it be of any use if we were there with some tools to clear away the burrs, bushes and so on?” Of course that would be great! We were happy that they were enthusiastic and by itself there was a plan to do

El Vicino

In May we went to 'our' village to show it to the parents of Maaike. So we drove there and after a half our drive with a lot of corners we were a bit drowsy getting out of the car. And there stood a friendly man in blue overalls.  He seemed Spanish we asked Maaike to talk to him. But she did not know what to say. So we looked at each other for a couple of minutes.  Then he started to tell that the village is empty which we agreed upon off course. He also told that the village was being bought by some people. Maaike asked if she should reply and we said yes please do. After telling the we are the mysterious people we are buying the village he started to tell a lot of stories. His name is Gerardo. He was born in the village and now lives in Burgos and in the summer in Abajas.  He knew about the buy because he owns a parcel of land and did not want to sell. He want to keep it for income and only wants to rent it out. So we talked about that for a bit and as we were interested in k

Finding the right pieces of land

When we first visited B├írcena de Bureba we where guided by the current owner Marcelino. As we where interested, we told him about our project Ardbol. We explained him that we needed about 5 to 10 hectares of land. He replied that it was no problem, he knew many farmers in the area. Soon we got an image of the land area (See image below) from Marcelino without any explanation but it looked promising.  We assumed the black crosses where the pieces of land we could buy. When I checked it on the Spanish cadastral website some pieces where quite clear but some existed out of many small parts.  After the price negotiation we where anxiously waiting on which pieces of land we could buy. In august we got a large zipfile with new information. As Yasmin could not open it and we where on mobiles we needed to wait until we where behind a computer, which of course added on to the tension. Finally we could open it. In it where 64 files. 60 of each house and 4 for the land. See the next image in whic