As the temperature rises and the days get notably longer, we become aware that spring is arriving in Ibiza.
This is usually a time of rapid plant growth and the approach of the tourist season, sending local businesses a message to prepare for the invasion of foreign visitors. You can see many people outside their shops, bars and hotels, painting and decorating, plus repairing seats and tables, ready to serve their clients better than the years before, or even opening a new business with all the dreams and promises of a successful adventure just over the horizon.
Here in the quiet hills of San Jose, the beautiful Casita Verde is also beginning to show some new signs of life, as colourful freesias fill the air with their unique fragrance and the frogs seems to be having a continuous party in the natural looking eco-pond, which has miraculously filled with water, despite the distinct lack of rain for this time of the year.
I must say that it does seem strange to have to water some of our desert plants that were planted during the winter, but are recently looking quite sad and dried out, even before the summer weather has arrived. Hopefully, we’ll have some wet days during the next few weeks, so that the gardens are looking alive and luxurious for my 70th birthday party, which we will make on Saturday the 25th of March.
This year, we’ll be celebrating the big day in and around the threshing circle, just above the pond and also next to our wonderful new sauna, which I managed to get finished and fully operational earlier this month.
Having installed a kind of Jacuzzi / hot tub up on one of the terraces above the yurts and enjoying a sea view, plus a perfect setting to sit in hot salty water while watching the sunset, I was dreaming of adding a sauna. This could well be the final touch to an already very comfortable, low impact country residence, in which to spend my final years in a physical form on our still beautiful planet Earth.
As far as I can see, we may very well be the last authentic humans to inhabit this universal spaceship, so we should make the most of our presence and hope that the children who will follow us into the future have the best possible chance of survival, or even better, to live a far more pleasant and creative life than we enjoyed.
Many people ask me what I suggest they do to protect themselves and their family from the possible negative effects of rapidly evolving artificial Intelligence, or the idea that we will be somehow wiped out by our over consumption and poor management of natural resources. I always advise them to think about looking for a place where they can produce everything they will need to live in a relatively comfortable way, without the necessity for any significant inputs from the outside world.
This could look something like the Casita Verde centre here in Ibiza, or some other form of socio-ecological community, in which a few families join their collective intelligence and resources to create a self-sufficient environment. Here they can hang out until this crazy phase of human metamorphosis that we are presently enduring becomes a more stable and regenerative model for planetary development (if that ever happens!).
Meanwhile, I guess we will have to go on living with the constant fear of being exterminated by crazy dictators, greedy and evil forces which appear to be from another universe and certainly don’t show too many signs of being the kind of human beings we’d like to have as our friends. However, if we move away from the madness and find a place where it’s easier to get along with each other and to live in harmony with our natural world, perhaps we can dodge the bullets. We might even find a way to make our own kind of metamorphosis into the beautiful life-forms we came here to experience. In any case, the next few short years will be crucial to our future existence and we must do all we can to help drive the movement towards a more fair and civilised global society, by taking care of our beloved planet and being kind to each other along the way.
The Ibiza Greenheart Guide
While watching the plants and trees grow taller in our beautiful gardens here in our little green paradise, we are also quite busy finishing the Greenheart Guide to Ibiza, a project we started in September last year and which was financially supported by donations from the Six Senses hotel group. We have so far registered more than 330 different entities and the list continues to grow day by day. If all goes according to plan, we should have the guide completed and published on-line by the end of April, just as the main tourism season takes off.
We will of course have to advertise the new guide in as many places as possible and are relying on the many magazines, social media platforms and government offices to help us with this task. Since the guide should be a very useful tool to attract more environmentally conscious visitors to our island, plus activate the imagination of our residents, we’re hoping that most people will make use of the wealth of information it contains and therefore help to enhance the sustainable evolution of Ibiza. (The web address has already been registered and will be hosted on a server in Switzerland which uses only 100% renewable energy).
You can find the new active website at: www.greenheart-guide.com, at the end of April, or when you see that we have announced its publication in the press, etc.
Casita Verde Ibiza
The Casita Verde Ibiza centre remains more or less closed to visitors, although we do offer occasional tours during the autumn, winter and springtime (see our education section for details on how to book a tour of the centre).
We also host meetings with other island environmental groups and will be doing some fundraising events, plus the occasional workshop, in order to make use of the extensive infrastructure we have built here over the years. Somehow, with the help from my girlfriend Georgina and our only resident volunteer - Nuria from Andalucia, we manage to maintain the five and a half hectare farm, two hectares of mature gardens and 17 structures in immaculate condition. This is mainly the result of good maintenance planning and constant vigilance on my part, plus some help from various friends who come by to help me when I need to do any work that is beyond my personal capability.
So far the system works very well, so long as I remain in good physical condition, but I am well aware that there will come a day in the not-so-distant future, when I may need more permanent staff as I become older and unable to cope with such a huge responsibility alone.
Casita Verde Granada
According to the latest reports from our friends in Casita Verde Granada, things are progressing nicely with the new structures and they have some promising volunteers lined up for the next few months.
One thing to note, is that the Granada Casita Verde will only be accepting male volunteers for the time being, as they have limited accommodation and prefer not to mix everyone under one roof. Also, they are mainly looking for volunteers with experience in building with natural materials, plus working on maintaining the hundreds of olive trees they need to take care of on the 10 hectare farm. Anyone interested in volunteering should get in touch with the director Rey Aldana, via the contact form on this website.
Of course, if you would like to visit our centre for a guided tour, or want to know how you can be a more eco-conscious citizen, please get in touch by email, sending your request to email@example.com, or calling our main office on 608838190 (English and Spanish)
With warm greetings from Casita Verde,
Chris Dews – coordinator