I am writing this letter for those of you interested in Hobbit Homes, and especially to those close friends I have made through doing the work on Vancouver Island and the surrounding Gulf Islands and in Africa.
I've been wanting to write this letter for awhile and apologize for the delay for those who were contacting the company, but with little response from me.
I'd like to say thank you for all the work, teaching and learning I obtained and which we were able to share over the past years in building. Some of you know that Hobbit Homes began from work which started with an apprenticeship with Cobworks on Mayne Island in 2001.
Hobbit Homes was established as an attempt to work collectively and discuss, share and find employment in natural-building and as a way to promote eco-conscious values. The work has spanned several areas and project work has happened in Canada, the U.S., Mexico and Africa. The work however has transitioned for me to work I'm mostly doing in Africa in the not-for-profit field and in academia (please check out www.earthrisingfoundation.org).
As in life things transition and change as one's interests change, but also as people come together to form new ways of doing things. Also I have been more focused in specializing my wide range of interests in natural building in the fields of African 'development' (for lack of a better word) and to the more general studies of the Anthropology of the 'house'.
Underlying the work there has always been a commitment to understanding what is of social value to communities. The cultivation and creation of space as well as locating meaning within one's natural surroundings has been an important underpinning for why Hobbit Homes began. To some degree the work was a response to the materialism of our culture, which I thought lacked value to the concerns of the environment and which was also a response to living solely to make profit at a cost to our sacred resources. But the balance needed of making a living and the concern for conservation of our natural resources, is perhaps the best summation of why the company started.
As this journey began in a spirit of youthful and boundless energy, there was also a period of 'burn out' and a transition was important towards finding a more thoughtful design of how best to use my energies. The website at one point was taken over by a 'cyber squatter' and used in a less than reputable manner. I thank my step-father for his legal efforts which resulted in the return of the site to its original form.
I will maintain this website for sometime and happy to take on limited consulting services, or contract work if the context is in East and South Africa. Elke Cole (firstname.lastname@example.org) is the best source of information on Vancouver Island and British Columbia for any services you may require.
I hope that as time-passes friends of Hobbit Homes will be able to stay in contact over periodic emails. I also desire to find a suitable person or company to take over the domain name and use it with intentions of a good-nature. If not the website will no doubt fade into the 'cyber-space void' over the next while as I grow roots in Africa.
Thank you for letting me help in expressing your creativity and values as you shaped your landscape with meaning and intention.