Following the Cobb Trail

Cobb Bench
Yesterday.  Saturday morning. My partner and I joined a meet up group at an Artsy Junk inspired cafe on the west side of town. Our adventure for the day was to tour a rambling journey of farms, homes and bus stops to check out and learn how to build benches, hobbit like domiciles and pizza ovens made from straw, sand (ground seashells, I've learned from the tour, everything pretty much is made from seashells) and water. Mix this organic matter together and voila!, there you have it, a strong structure in place, a flintstone like dwelling that can outlast fires, earthquakes, and hundreds of years of nature's beatings.

The biggest threat standing in the way.

Bureaucracy. County. City. Regulations. A disgruntled neighbor turning you in for residing in a 120 square unpermitted space that cost less than $1000 dollars in materials, and a handful of work parties with your friends on a small stamp of land.

There is hope that with our ongoing homeless challenges,  seasonal floods and now firestorms, it may serve up some common sense. Can we possibly see humanity rise and embrace the wisdom of our native cultures and build natural structures that are affordable and can survive climate change and disasters?

I see changes happening.  Tiny flowers pushing through the ground cover. I am an eternal optimist.

I finished off my hazelnut latte and tossed the disposable cup with plastic lid in the waste basket. I was not off to a fabulous start on our sustainable trek, a pang of guilt hit my gut and I promised myself for the umpteenth to bring a thermos in the future.

We found our ride in the parking lot.

My mind was swimming with building codes and adobe bricks as nine of us bounced about in the beat up passenger van, our guide and host, captain at the wheel winding his way on a narrow road facing oncoming weekend warriors,  he hurried onward, pedal to the gas, property to property showing us his cobb creations.

My co passengers, some with wifts of cannabis clinging to their sweaters and light jackets bemoaned the local issues from homelessness to the invasion of wild turkeys and boar, forgiving the previously maligned mountain lion and engaging the idea of introducing the California extinct Grizzly bear. Cross chatting among themselves solving the worlds problems whole before slamming into the same obstacles.  Greed versus empathy stacked up against human individuality, self interest and ingenuity. I listened along seated down on the rear bench seat, seat buckled and squished against the window, overheated, holding my partner's hand tight staring out the window praying for fresh air while admiring the grove of redwoods passing by my finger smudged window.

I smiled to myself thinking this is why I love life and the craziness of it all.

Plum trees, yellow mustard, Bernie and thank you first responders signs waved in the distance as we traveled deeper into the Redwood forest, losing ourselves in the possibilities of tomorrow.