Archive for February, 2008

We need a name!

Posted in Uncategorized on February 25, 2008 by earthbricker

Hello everybody

Gee brought me on the idea that we could start to collect eventual names for the new mudhouse. Unfortunately the other two bungalows are called “mud 1″ and mud 2” so please help me to prevent the name “mud 3”. My favourite so far is “the fortress”. Add your suggestions as comments!


The final-wall-countdown

Posted in Uncategorized on February 24, 2008 by earthbricker

These are the latest pics from the building-site. Today I set symbolicly the first brick of the last layer. On the left you see the future sleeping-room and on the right the balcony starts growing too. All the windows are set already. Very exciting right now!


On the front you can see the balcony better. From there you have an unbelievable view on the limestone-rocks of Phoudindaeng. We will find a way to hide that ugly cement wall.


Slash and burn

Posted in Uncategorized on February 23, 2008 by earthbricker


Yesterday it was getting very hot at the building-site. The sun was burning down and we were sweating a lot, when the lao guys came to burn down the leftovers from the bush that was growing there until last month. I felt like in Dubai! I think we had about 50 degrees up there on the second floor and I was just waiting until the sleeping room catches fire.


An american guy made an very good joke. He was screaming: “Have you ever heard about global warming?!”cimg0425.jpg

Sok di! Soon more. The house is getting bigger, higher, more beautiful and lovely!

Here you can see a short video about the work and the heat:

Dancing upside-down on the ceiling

Posted in Uncategorized on February 20, 2008 by earthbricker


So we finished the outer wall of the ground-floor, but we still had to build the wall that separates the bath-room from the living-room. Between that wall and the central-pillar you see on that pic, the stairs will go up to that long window. So while you are walking up to the second floor you can watch the mulberries grow.


The last three days we were working on the construction of the floor for the second level. I had to teach myself in “walking” on a 5cm beam in 3 meters height. Surprisingly the lao side was not absolutely amused about my snail-style. In the bavarian mountains I learned I should always have three secure points before I take the next steps. Here the rule says maximum one point. They jump around like the new baby-goat. A third lao guy joined the team. Wad the carpenter. Very nice and quiet guy. All the volunteers who were working with Chan know why I enjoy now the not stressy guys. As you can see, they are already enjoying the view you will have from the balcony soon. Sometimes I just have to sit there and do nothing. Unbelievable that they gave that place to me to build a house.


After installing the beams, we started today to raise the wall into the second floor. I was very happy that we also could start with the sleeping-room above the path you see on the left. It feels fantastic that all these ideas and pictures in my head and on paper slowly become visible. Tomorrow is said to be the day of the balcony pillars. I’m excited, but I know that I won’t praise the day before the evening. Actually I should tell you the hammer-story. Next time.

Every evening we cover all the wall with a huge tarp. I don’t trust the moods of the weather in Lao anymore. This pic is from today.You can see the wooden pillars. Until there we will build the wall. 1,75m. The lao guys think that this is way too high!


Lao acrobatics

Posted in Uncategorized on February 14, 2008 by earthbricker

Hello everybody

So today we could finish the wall of the first floor. The last two days we had a lot of fun at the building-site too. Endless mud-fights. That house is really like a castle. You can hide, climb and jump everywhere to find the perfect position to fire sticky mudballs. Sometimes we had a cease-fire, so we could work too. Even Charlotte showed up with her camera to film our little personal battles. She is doing an documentary about the farm. This picture was taken on the 13.2.08


This picture was made short before we finished the wall. You see Onkeo wasting precious building material by throwing it at the poor camera-man.


I grew up on a cherry-tree in our garden at home. But compared to Ham, Onkeo and Khamdaeng I’m absolutely scared of heights. They were jumping around like there is no tomorrow. These bricks they are setting here were the last ones. Tomorrow we will put the beams for the second floor on their pillars. What you see here is the bath-room. We will put a wall between the central-pillar, where also the stair will be, and the wall on the right. So you can take a shower and watch Phai collecting food for the goats, as you can see him doing right now. Actually it’s time to say sorry to him, he was the main target today.


So that’s what the building-site looks like now. The lao guys didn’t want to dance .



Posted in Uncategorized on February 12, 2008 by earthbricker

Sabaydee. I’m very hungry, so excuse me for writing only a fe words.

So we started three days ago with mixing mortar.


Improvising is also sometimes necessary, for example if you forgot to put nails that connect the entrance-door with the bricks. But no problem, boo pen njang.


To show you how fast a house grows as soon as you are building the walls, I put the pictures from the last three days from two different points of view in a row.

Sunday, 10.2.08


Monday, 11.2.08

Tuesday, 12.2.08


From the other side the ground floor is already finished.


Sunday, Moritz dancing on the wall.


Tuesday, Solana and Chris dance on the wall.


Wednesday, TJ and Solana are dancing for the audience.cimg0358.jpg

Waiting for the mudbricks

Posted in Uncategorized on February 9, 2008 by earthbricker

Today we finished the last steps before we can start tomorrow with the first mudbricklane. As mortar we will us the same mixture like for the mudbricks. 50% clay, 20% cutted straw, 15% sand and 20% rice-husk. Onkeo and I couldn’t hide our joy after work today, when we noticed tomorrow we finally start.


This is what the building-site looks like now. The frames on the left hold a cement wall, I thought what is necessary for the shower, where mud should impossible be to use. As it goes in Laos, Wong, a experienced lao builder told me that we easily could have taken mudbricks if we had put tiles on the inside afterwards. Boo pen njang, bast scho, doesn’t matter. This time it’s Jenny’s turn to dance on the wall.