Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Early days at Fuji Eco Park

After a good night sleep I awoke to a very pleasant morning with birds chirping and general country sounds. At 7:00 am a musical chime is broadcast over the district to let the farmers know what time it is.

I met the other staff of the farm and took a walk around the property to see what was happening. So many systems are in place but all mothballed from the winter months.

The property is 7.5 acres and a lot of work has happened over the past 8 years but a lot of misunderstanding or break down of Permaculture along the way. There is solar and wind electrical generating systems and Masa is right into converting vehicles into electric drive, with some great success.

We wandered around the property and I made observations along the way and offered some consultation toward bettering some of the systems. Design and redesign as we all have been taught. The initial design saw an existing dwelling as Zone 0, but now the Center House is another Zone 0, so some effort is being made to make closer zones to it.

There was a lot to see and for me to get stuck into. Designing a parcel of land for some cabins, retro fitting an old oil storage tank into accommodation, building a compost bay system, surveying and swaling a ridge for crops, getting the nursery up and running, designing crop systems, using less oil based energy systems.

Touch down Narita, Tokyo. Japan

Arrived in Tokyo Wednesday 09/04/08 and was greeted by a very happy Mr Imai (Masa). Customs were very good and efficient and I had no dramas as I had nothing to hide anyway.

Masa took me into Tokyo city and we went to Tokyo Tower to view the city. The Tower was built some 40 years ago and is akin to a radio tower but much bigger.

After Masa drove to a very famous temple where we tossed a coin into the prayer box and said a quick prayer. The temple area is famous for its architecture and vending stalls selling all types of rice crackers and tourist stuff. We then took lunch at a restaurant that specializes in eel. Every part of the eel was served and it was so delicious. I love Japanese food and am looking forward to trying lots of other dishes including sushi.

Later we went on a river cruise to a famous Tokyo park. I was able to find things growing there that I didn’t expect. Vetch and other plants that make that system function well. Lots of Bonsai trees everywhere as well.

After a very busy day of flying and sight seeing we headed for the farm at Fujigane. We stopped of briefly to get dinner at a family type restaurant for sushi. Oishi(yum). It was well and truly dark when we got there and I was very lost for bearings. I would have to wait till the following morning to see where I was.