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Got our shipment of Small Homes yesterday!

Some say the world will end in fire…

In the last few months I've experienced extreme cold (Minnesota) and warm weather (80's here in Baja). It made me think of summers down here, which are just about unbearable, and the 2 extremes (as applied to being outside—I'm not talking about heaters in the cold or air conditioners in the heat). In the cold, you can bundle up to mitigate the extreme, but in the heat you're out of luck. One time in August down here, my landlord Yuca and I would go across the dusty road and lie down in the shallow river in T-shirts and shorts, then come back to my room and stand in front of the fan while soaking wet for a few precious moments of coolness.

Fire and Ice 
Some say the world will end in fire, 
Some say in ice. 
From what I’ve tasted of desire 
I hold with those who favor fire. 
But if it had to perish twice, 
I think I know enough of hate 
To say that for destruction ice 
Is also great 
And would suffice.
-Robert Frost

Devil's Claw

This plant will grab whatever part of you it touches.
From Wikipedia: "Proboscidea is a genus of flowering plant in the family Martyniaceae, some of whose species are known as devil's claw, devil's horn, ram's horn, or unicorn plant. The plants produce long, hooked seed pods. The hooks catch on the feet of animals, and as the animals walk, the pods are ground or crushed open, dispersing the seeds.

The fruits of all species are edible before they ripen and become woody, they can be steamed and eaten much like okra.…"


The Dude!

This is Paul Meredith, owner of Buzzard's Bar and Grill near San José del Cabo. It took me 3 days to figure out who he reminded me of. As of in The Great Lebowski…

Check out Photo-Collage of My Week in Baja

Boy am I havin fun! It's been a perfect week down here. In the water at 7:30 this morning, a shower and now latte and raisin roll and good wi-fi. I wish I had more time to do stuff like this. Idea! I'll make a little short-run book of the trip. Where's my clone, anyway?
It's so easy down here now, and it was so hard 20-30 years ago. My great little Baja bug was under water twice, I had a sketchy relationship with the cunning landlord of the palapa I rented (for $1,000 a year), the place was destroyed in a hurricane of Nov 4 cuatro de Noviembre in the '90s, and on…
Now there's a smoothly paved road 12 mi. out to Shipwrecks. Funny, there don't seem to be many people around at all. Part of that being wealthy people buying (or building) trophy houses that they rarely visit. Summer's the south-swell surfing season down here and Nov-Dec-Jan are prime times for people fleeing cold climes, but March seems perfect, it's really comfortable, cool at night and April winds haven't started. Surprisingly, I found nno mention of the surf online. There's nothing like checking out the surf in person.
 I still love San José del Cabo. Wandering around the quiet streets. Last night at dusk, Chilón and I walked down to the palm grove by the San José river; it was—the perfect Spanish word—tranquillo. Tortillas de nopales in a little roadside shack, with la cocinera patting out fresh tortillas…

My Instagram on the web this morning came out like a poster for the past few days:


Gas-guzzler Boats of the Rich and Famous

via Instagram https://www.instagram.com/p/BRqslKfBY4K/
At the yacht harbor in Playita, just east of San José del Cabo. How about the hull design of the top one—I'll bet that baby moves. 

Ooo-wee what a tool! #layout #collage #maker #instagram

via Instagram https://www.instagram.com/p/BRqq-OCBQNs/

I asked Chilon how he did his Instagram collages and it took him 2 minutes to show me how to use#layout, #instagram #collage #maker. Wow! Last night at the #carnival...

via Instagram https://www.instagram.com/p/BRqqqcnhXB3/

Lots of red on this trip

via Instagram https://www.instagram.com/p/BRoxD6thlWC/

Just had excelente green enchiladas/beans/rice plus Mexican apple soda for $5. Off beaten tourist path.

via Instagram https://www.instagram.com/p/BRowm3uBpmM/

#surf at #shipwrecks this morning. Only one guy out. 6-8 ft. faces, not showing up on any surf report

via Instagram https://www.instagram.com/p/BRoaqIEh8Uy/

SMALL HOMES Now Available

Our new book Small Homes: The Right Size is now available at independent bookstores, and Amazon — as well as from us: www.shelterpub.com/building/small-homes

Shameless Commerce Dept. This is, I think, the best building book we’ve ever done. (Yes, I’m sure I’ve said this before, but it keeps reoccurring to me.)  Shelter is everyone’s favorite; it captured the times, it inspired thousands of homes. Builders of the Pacific Coast is in some ways, my best book. It’s an odyssey of discovery where the reader rides shotgun with me over a 2-year period. Cohesive and focused.

BUT Small Homes is so useful to so many people in this era of astronomical home prices and rents, that I think it’s hugely important. It offers alternatives to people looking for rentals on Craigslist or homes on Zillow. Here are 65 very different homes, of different materials, in different parts of the world. The idea, as with all our building books is to use your hands to create your own shelter.

Two things I’ve discovered about this book (after seeing the finished product):
  1. There are a lot of homes out in middle America – Minnesota, Indiana, Missouri, Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina, more so than in any of our other books.
  2. It sparkles. Largely due to Rick’s considerable Photoshop skills, a motley assortment of photos from contributors have been rendered in colorful detail. I was stunned when I saw the first book off the press. The photos draw you in.

You Can Take the Boy Out of Baja…

Monday early evening, March 13, 2017
I’m out in a wonderful thatched-roof domicile about 12 miles east of San José del Cabo; it looks out to the ocean and gets the sea breezes. The surf is up and there was only one surfer out today. Surfing has become too much of a hassle for me lately, crowds and age the main detractors. With skateboarding, there’s no problem getting up, and there are no crowds. The drawbacks are, yes, pavement and cars (and age, que lástima).
So I’ve been swimming. Jeez, if I lived where water was this warm I’d be in it every day. Tonight I bagged it because of the shorebreak – steep beach means you can get handled coming back in – as I did yesterday, rolled around and thoroughly pounded – sand in hair, ears, coating body, I mean I was sanded!

#surfers #skateboarders, bring your longboard if you're coming to surf in #loscabos. The 12-mile newly paved road out to #shipwrecks is hill after hill, smooth pavement, few cars.

via Instagram https://www.instagram.com/p/BRoO0oLhRQV/

Perfectly proportioned little hip roof building at Shipwrecks Beach. #architecture #building #thatch #bamboo #palapa

via Instagram https://www.instagram.com/p/BRoOKAEhuus/

And Now, Red…

On side street in San José del Cabo. Sign says "Casa dela güera." Not "guerra" as in "war." Güera is listed as "blond" in Spanish dictionary.

I'd never think of putting blue and pink together but it totally works.

via Instagram https://www.instagram.com/p/BRiw9f8hS0M/

Sign at Buzzard Bar & Grill

via Instagram https://www.instagram.com/p/BRiw0KahgW-/

Table and chairs made from #pallets. Mexican ingenuity. #palletfurniture #design #recycle

via Instagram https://www.instagram.com/p/BRiwuMTh7iW/