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Showing posts from January, 2024

Sudden Fame

On Thursday 25th of January we got a message from our dutch friend in Spain, a link to an article. She had sent it to us although the expectation was we already knew this. As this article was about the Ardbol village.  But no, we did not know anything. And that was clear while reading the article. There was only vague and generic info which was only partly correct. There was an image of the journalist herself as she did not yet know who we were. Although the lack of information, the article was nice to read. And that is what the site Spanjevandaag also thought. From a friend in Holland we got a message: ‘read this article, it is about a project similar to yours’. Yes it was, better yet it was our project, the article was translated directly from the Spanish version. We also found the same article on the website It did not take long before a large dutch news site the AD also copied the article. They copied the article from the Spanjevandaag website. Interesting to see how

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

Investigating the soil

We want to know what the ground is made of so we had a ground drill to investigate. In every piece of land, five in total, we drilled a hole to see what it was made of.  As you can see in the film there was not much to find. Only clay and a bit of sand. We even could not get the drill in more than 30 centimeters as the ground was made so compact from all the heavy machinery driving on it. Traditional farming will plow the ground loosening the top soil but compacting the soil bellow it. Making a plow pan or hardpan.    This is something we need to fix but for now we took a sample of soil from our 5 main fields to analyze at home.  Besides the hardpan layer we also noticed that there was hardly anything alive in the ground. No plants or vagetations and no insects. After many holes d rilled we finally found one worm!  

Mailbox part two

Our first attempt to add a mailbox to our 'office' building failed. When we attached it we had the right tools but they where not charged and without electricity in the village we could not fix that. So with some fiddling we added the mailbox. The next time we visited we noticed someone had added an wooden stick to it to keep it up there which was a real nice gesture from an unknown stranger. But in the summer the mailbox did fall off and disappeared.   In October 2023 we came back with a new mailbox and a charged drill. We attached it and also added glue to make it nice and firm.  To make visitors aware of the project we also added our flyer as a sign just above it. Lets hope it will make people aware of our good intentions and our nice project.