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Builders of the Pacific Coast

We've got 110 pages done on our new book. Here's a late article that will go into the book:
"I went through the 4-year carpentry apprenticeship here in Canada (the only female in a class of 80 guys), then worked in the trade for some years but got disgusted with the industry (and clients) and what I was asked to put on the planet so I got out of it. Now the money's tight but my heart's clear…
I know I'll never have the money to buy a piece of land so a friend of mine suggested I build myself a house on wheels, seeing as plenty of folks own large tracts and feel a lot more inclined to share if no foundations get put down. As soon as I started working on the caravan, offers began to come forth for places to park it. I'm glad I did it, it's really a special feeling to have a roof of one's own. I stripped a five-ton truck to the chassis and basically built a small 8'x20' cabin on it. I had a hitch welded on to it at the front. A tractor, pick-up truck or small cat can move it, depending on terrain. We did it twice and none of the windows broke. She's my baby!
Solange Desormeaux, Salt Spring Island B.C., Canada
....and don't worry about me spreading the word: You guys have been my heroes for 20 years, and 'still the same after all these years....'
Thank you for all you do, we need it!!!!"


Storm Damage on Beach/Dusky Footed Woodrat Nests

We're in our 6th day without electricity. We've been running the office on a Honda generator, careful to have only essential appliances running. All 5 of us in the office dress warmly. We run little (860 watts) radiant heaters with ceramic panels once in a while. I've gotten into layers, up to 8 of them now, to keep warm.
There were almost a million people with power knocked out in this storm. We have a propane stove and propane water heater in the house, with wood heat, so it's not too bad. It's really hard on people with electric heat, hot water, and stoves; they're suffering.
I went down to the beach yesterday and the level of sand is about 8' lower than normal.

Local beach. On the right is the "Jefferson Airplane House" (so-called because Grace Slick and Paul Kanter lived there in the early '70s). There's been a huge movement of sand, maybe 6-8' has been washed out. You can see the normal sand line just below the graffiti on the sea wall in front of the house. All those rocks below the ramp down to the beach are usually covered with sand. I've never seen it this low before.


I also went out yesterday to shoot pix of woodrat nests. They are called Dusky Footed Woodrats and they build these twig lodges in inaccessible spots in the woods. Inside the nests are chambers and often frogs or mice may move in to share the shelter. Some of them are very nicely designed and constructed, perfectly symmetrical cones.

They are similar in shape to some of the California Indian structures.