"Self-sufficiency does not mean 'going back' to the acceptance of a lower standard of living. On the contrary, it is the striving for a higher standard of living, for food that is organically grown and good, for the good life in pleasant surroundings... and for the satisfaction that comes from doing difficult and intricate jobs well and successfully." John Seymour ~ Self Sufficiency 2003

Tuesday, 3 August 2010

Our "footprint" comparison

Our friend, Roy, sent me a text yesterday to tell us that Google Earth has updated the map of our area, so naturally I had to go and have a look.

I'm thrilled, and horrified at the same moment.

Thrilled to see that we're finally on the map, and it's not just a piece of land anymore, but horrified at the chaos we're created.

Admittedly, it will all settle down and the "scar" won't be visible (in a year or so), but if anyone ever wanted to see what their "footprint" can do to the earth's surface, I think this is a perfect example.

For comparison I am showing the image from 2008 that is on my web page together with the latest image from September 2009.  Google Earth literally took the 2009 satellite image the day my husband and son competed the Resin Roof Tile installation.

The new "Voltruis Dam" (Ostrich dam) was entered on our plans as "existing", at the time of drawing them up - apparently it is now illegal to create a dam on your land without planning permission.

To give you an idea of where what is on our plot:

We still don't have any water in our dam - we reckon that we need to possibly dig it deeper.  However, we are going to wait until the rains are finished this season - normally in October / November there is a major downpour - let's see if it will finally remain in the dam...

It is also a pity that none of our trees are visible - guess they're still too small.  Will be interesting to see how they change the image in years to come.

And our grape vines - we need to change the angle at which they're lying - to drain the water away from them and towards the dam.  Grapes don't like permanently wet (clay) feet!

One lives and learns - with many thanks to those more knowledgeable souls who take the time to advise and guide.

And to give you an idea of the distance to our neighbours:

Our neighbour, Roy, is exactly 1.2kms from our gate to his gate along the sand road.  And Tom is approximately 160mtrs.

The "Ghost House", so named by the locals, is +/- 100 years old.  Because it has stood empty, and unloved, for too many years, it is falling to pieces.  The walls are made of cob / earth bricks, and the most recent roof is IBR sheeting, which is rusty and full of holes.  A lovely project - but I reckon one that could empty the purse pretty quickly!  Last year a young couple bought it, and renovated a smaller outbuilding, with a view to staying there whilst they worked on the main house.  However, they have just fallen pregnant with their first baby, and need the money, so they have placed it on the market again.

We are planning on going to the plot for a few days this coming weekend - the hubby wants to get the front porch area in, complete with designated braai (barbecue) area - he's tired of roughing it when he has a braai.  And it's my birthday next week, so I'm going to spoil myself and finally buy myself the Dover Stove from Negosiegat in Barrydale.


Grant K Bingham said...

Wow, I stumbled across this completely by accident. We are the owners of the "ghost house"! We have had beautiful plans drawn up to fix it but the cost was just too much at the time. Our "baby" is three now, a bit older and perhaps able to enjoy a weekend out on the farm so we will try it soon. Before winter is over. Would love to pop in and say hello. If we had the money we would have fixed it up and be there all the time! B.t.w. thank you for the "young couple" :) made my day! (we are actually old farts...)

Grant K Bingham said...

Oops, see the comment went through as "Grant Bingham", it is actually his wife, Adeleida, who made the comment :)

Dani said...

Adi & Grant - Welcome :) Smnall world, fancy you finding me and my blog LOL

It can't be three years, can it?

It would be lovely to see you both again, and to meet your little one.

I wold have loved to have had a project like the Ghost Hosue, but as you say, t'will take some money, even if you were able to find 2nd hand materials. But - think of the treasure you'd have had afterwards. Perhaps you should conotinue with the "outbuilding" and turn the "house" into a barn. I know there is a lovely white owl that lvies in your roof.

Let's see if the bug bites you again once you've been here agin... :)