Getting Cozy and Bringing Fungus Among Us

Week Twenty Nine (18-24 August 2014)

Living in conditions that lay somewhere between those of a college dorm and a second rate sleep-over summer camp for misled youths in an oddball B-movie, it was a harried week of settling in at the base camp on our newly settled property. Our efforts focused on getting as comfortable as possible in our rough lodgings and beginning various field chores that are required to advance the establishment of the homestead as we wait for land clearing projects to end and the building of our yurt compound to begin. Other than that…

Oh wait! Lest I forget. Like a Death Star tractor beam, Uncle Sam reached out with a contingent offer of employment for both me and the bride in security roles at the local airport–part time, full federal benefits. I think the message at one point mentioned the word “Borg” and something about being “assimilated,” but the benefits and hours are perfect for our current needs while establishing the homestead. We will keep you posted on any progress in our efforts to again embrace the empire.

So…I have much to share, but our current situation leaves me with limited battery life and sporadic internet connectivity. Our situation also makes it very difficult to coordinate with my editor-in-chief, the bride. ( Oh yeah. She checks all of my published written work for tone and content to keep me out of trouble, and for more mundane grammar and spelling issues to perpetuate the facade that I am educated, at least by American standards.)

All this said, I will limit this posting to a photo update of some our more memorable events this week and, in the coming days, will seek out some time to pen more details of the past few week’s landmark activities. For now, enjoy the pics.

The Gate For Our Property Goes In

Marking Property Lines With Ahu (Hawaiian cairns)

Base Camp Storage Solutions

Manly Chores

Propagating Bamboo From a Grove On Our Property (folks pay up to $9 for ones this size)

Preparing The Family Veggie Patch

U.S. Army Entrenching Tool Meets Lava Rock

Adding A Bedroom Was Never Easier

Taming Of The Gecko

Mycology Redux

I will pause the photo montage here to note that fungi are one of those fascinating things of nature that, very sadly, only get a passing treatment in most school science classes. The mushrooms that do not kill you or cure cancer or recreationally speed you toward altered states of consciousness are tasty to boot.

That said, some of you know that I have dabbled in culinary mushroom cultivation for several years. While the easy-to-care-for oysters have been my greatest success, I have played with morels, shitake, and pioppino with results ranging from abject failure to multiple flushes over extended periods of time. Hoping to take my mycological expertise to new heights, I spent half of Saturday trying to advance my skills a bit by learning how to inoculate local woods with shitake spore and to sterilize other media (straw) to grow oysters.

I now have the makings of shitake mycelium (pounded into a log of local eucalyptus) and oyster mycelium (mixed into a bag of sterilized hay) purring away under the canopy of the bamboo grove on our property.

That’s A Wrap

I’ll stop there. My battery is dying. The library is kicking me off of my internet session. Time to hop into the Jeep and rally back at camp.


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