Hey readers! I don’t know about you, but I am a firm believer that the universe has hands. I believe this because I have felt them on my back, pushing me when it is time to let go and move forward. I have felt them often as gentle, loving nudges; but when these nudges are ignored (which I admit they often are) the hands aren’t afraid to shove. The most dramatic example of this in my life so far happened just last month when I was suddenly deported from the European Union during, might I add, this global pandemic, and given two weeks to pack my things and find a place to be deported to. I had felt the loving nudges, the gentle caresses, leading up to this as various housing siuations and job opportunities simultaneously falling through. I’d felt them constantly as the stubborn presence of bronchitis that would lie dormant and flare up whenever I got particularly stressed. I felt them as the rejection letter from the American liberal arts college in Berlin I was sure I would be accepted into. I felt them as neurotic roommates, expensive BVG fines for getting caught every single rare time I rode the train without a ticket, and as the sudden end of a solid relationship. And, since apparently none of that was enough for me, I felt them as the final forceful shove of deportation.

Looking back on my last days in Berlin, my experience can best be compared to the numerous times I’ve found myself standing on the edge of a high rock overlooking a deep river, and have closed my eyes, turned my brain off, and jumped. 

When I opened my eyes again, I found that the hands of the universe had landed me safely on the top of a mountain in Costa Rica, San Vito, surrounded by a mirage of blue-crowned motmot birds, menelaus blue morpho and glasswing butterflies, DMT drenched cane toads, a very large cat named Pete, a hyperactive puppy named Finn, four lovely humans named Kristy, David, Nestor, and Jefferson, and, many, many happy earthworms.

To catch everyone up who is not in the know, I have been spending this month tucked away on 33 acres of liberated jungle; a property guided by permaculture principles and steered masterfully to the edge between harmony and chaos. During my time volunteering here I’ve had my nose to the grind stone working towards a permaculture design certificate. This is an opportunity that was not even on my radar until days before leaving Berlin when I was frantically scrolling through Workaway at 3am with a cappuccino and stumbled across Patos Suertudos. And now, a month later, permaculture has opened a portal for me to experience the natural world in all its glorified ancient intelligence and clever methods of design.

I’ve always been a nature lover, but becoming aware of all the underground partnerships that trees form with mushrooms, and the business they have exchanging sugars for nitrogen, for example, takes my disconnected admiration to feelings of an intimate kinship. Like how you think you know your parents when you’re young, but it isn’t until you’re older that you realize that they are complex people with memories and an entire life unrelated to you; that their sole purpose in this life is not in fact to raise you and clothe you and spoil you. And it’s that moment in your growth when you begin to see your parents as people outside their parental role and the relationship becomes something more like a friendship, if everything goes well. 

I think it’s problematic to live our whole lives viewing nature as a parent, and essential to our true understanding and respect of her (in attempt to avoid referring to nature as an it) to begin forming a symbiotic friendship.

So with all of that said, I am very excited to share with you my end of course project that Kristy, Nestor, and myself have been working enthusiastically toward all month. The final product of all of our creative and intellectual talents combined has come together in the form of a musical puppet show. The show is a symphony of hand-painted puppets and backdrops, an allegorical storyline that follows a rebellious fish named Joe, and an original song composed out of the deep urgency to reunite with our natural world. By communicating the message of permaculture through the medium of a musical puppet show, our hope is to reach a wide audience that trancends age and language. 

The song, We Already Paid, written by Kristy Trione and musically arranged and performed by Nestor Padilla and myself is, at its core, a call to action to align our values with natural systems as opposed to a system that rewards an endless cycle of sociopathic consumerism. 

You can find the lyrics in English and Spanish attached to the bottom of this post. We have left it open sourced, and encourage all to take it in as their own. Spread it around as an anthem of the people, add some maracas and dance salsa to it… North Carolina folks I want to hear your best country covers, and to my fam in Berlin I’m very interested to hear a techno cover!…Sing it in the shower, sing it to your tomato plants as you water your garden, sing it to the tiny immune systems of bees, sing it to all the rebellious plants pushing through the cracks in the concrete!

Thanks so much for reading all the way until now! Stay tuned for a post about my new home on the Caribbean coast on a year old 100 acre permaculture farm.

Pura Vida my good fam!

Gressa

We already paid

We already paid
We should have what we need
We’ve already paid
We’re done feeding your greed

We’ve already paid
We should have what that’s worth
We’ve already paid
While you’ve trashed up the earth

We’re all gonna turn to nature
To be our true guide
Everybody’s gonna turn off the tele
With its pack of lies

We’ll work for ourselves
No more for the “man”
We’ll work for each other
To restore the land

We’ve already paid
But it’s never enough
We’ve already paid
While you’ve taken too much

We’ve already paid
We’ve paid with the time for our kids
we’ve already paid chasing
soul’s empty success

We’re tired and we’re going home

We’ll turn to nature
To be our true guide
Turn off the tele
With its pack of lies

We’ll work for ourselves
Not for the “man”
We’ll work for each other
To restore the land

We’ve already paid
with our land, seas and our skies
Now we are going
Beyond corporate demise

We’re tired and we’re leaving it behind

We’ve already paid
For our parks, roads and war
We’ve already paid
We won’t pay any more

We’ll turn to nature
To be our true guide
Turn off the tele
With its pack of lies

We’ll work for ourselves
Not for the “man”
We’ll work for each other
To restore the land

Ya Pagamos

Ya pagamos
Deberíamos tener lo que necesitamos
Ya hemos pagado
Hemos terminado de alimentar tu codicia

Ya hemos pagado
Deberíamos tener lo que vale
Ya hemos pagado
Mientras destrozaste la tierra

Todos vamos a recurrir a la naturaleza
Para ser nuestra verdadera guía
Todo el mundo va a apagar la tele
Con su paquete de mentiras

Trabajaremos por nosotros mismos
No más para el “hombre”
Trabajaremos el uno para el otro
Para restaurar la tierra

Ya hemos pagado
Pero nunca es suficiente
Ya hemos pagado
Si bien has tomado demasiado

Ya hemos pagado
Pagamos con el tiempo para nuestros hijos
ya hemos pagado por perseguir
el éxito vacío del alma

Estamos cansados ​​y nos vamos a casa

Recurriremos a la naturaleza
Para ser nuestra verdadera guía
Apaga la tele
Con su paquete de mentiras

Trabajaremos por nosotros mismos
No para el “hombre”
Trabajaremos el uno para el otro
Para restaurar la tierra

Ya hemos pagado
con nuestra tierra, mares y nuestros cielos
Ahora vamos
Más allá de la desaparición empresarial

Estamos cansados ​​y lo dejamos atrás

Ya hemos pagado
Por nuestros parques, carreteras y guerra
Ya hemos pagado
No pagaremos más

Recurriremos a la naturaleza
Para ser nuestra verdadera guía
Apaga la tele
Con su paquete de mentiras

Trabajaremos por nosotros mismos
No para el “hombre”
Trabajaremos el uno para el otro
Para restaurar la tierra

Thanks for tuning in!

4 thoughts on “Deep Sea Dreamer; Introducing my end of permaculture design course project.

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