Long term volunteering
Written by Ana Obreza from Slovenia
It is what it is.
Soon after arriving to Herzfeld Sennrüti, I realised that this sentence spontaneously became my mantra.
It is the Earth, the place where we landed – we, four souls from parallel universes who decided to volunteer for a year in ecovillage HerzeldSennrüti and accept Degersheim in the north-west Switzerland to be our home.
And it is the earth, it is putting hands into the soil, collecting horse mist and digging the ground, seeding and weeding, caring and harvesting, it is taking off shoes and feeling earth´s breath beneath, it is hugging colourful souls in beautiful bodies, it is massaging tired shoulders and neck and back, it is preparing rich dark compost, it is cleaning nails all brown and black from garden works, it is feeling the gravity while dancing in biodanza session and while walking towards the peak of the mountain, it is sanding the floor renovating an apartment and being all dusty destructing old walls, it is kneading the dough for the pie and peeling an endless pile of carrots: it is the Earth.
It is the Water, the flow of time which knew exactly when is time for us to gathered together – each of us with each of us, entering community, learning how to be a part and to be whole at the same time – and to discover this during a yearlong project from last March to an extra day of February this year.
And it is the water, it is cleaning guest-rooms and bathrooms and my room and kitchen and the dishes and workshop and tools and whatever else should be cleaned, it is watering thirsty little plants, it is swimming in fresh and cool Neckar in the heat of burning summer, it is juicy sweet watermelon and delicious home-made peanut or blackberry banana ice-cream, it is feeling all kinds of already known and first-met feelings, it is letting the tears run away from its source, it is compassion, it is emptying garden hoses before the winter comes, it is the first snowflake on the tip of nose, it is laundry, it is the sound of singing bowls, it is playing music in the same flow with dear people, it is dancing on the wave of the music: it is the Water.
It is the Air, the spirit of Life which yearns to express freely and with no censorship, to live the best of our creative potentials – and so we came to take deep fresh breath and strengthen our lungs – to come into full powers of our vividness.
And it is the air, it is joining our breaths in the singing circle, it is holding breath when landscape view opens all gently and fiercely beautiful, it is laughing out loud in a good company and preferably to the silliest jokes, it is being aware of inhaling and exhaling while practising pranayama with young dedicated teacher, it is jumping with kids on the trampoline, it is driving on the bicycle downhill shouting out for joy and it is also gasping cycling uphill, it is sighing of accordion bellow, it is taking an evening walk when strong wind blows firmly to bring the change, it is blowing a spoonful of a hot sauce to try if it´s salty enough,it is hoovering the corridor we´re responsible for its cleanness, it is drying hair with hairdryer to feel fresh and prepared for German lesson after long day in construction, it is overcoming stupid fear to sound stupid while trying to speak German and letting the words out of mouth however they sound: it is the Air.
It is the Fire, the sparkle of passion that we all, young and old, no matter our body-age, from here or there, whoever wants to leave or stay – that we all would burn into a flame and be able to bring light and warmness to each other and into the world.
And it is the fire, it is dancing balfolk with burning cheeks and heels, it is putting branches and cones into huge kon-tikibiochar kiln to burn them into charcoal, it is practising fire breath at kundalini yoga lectures, it is confronting opinions about little daily things and deeper personal questionings, it is cooking and baking for fifteen or fifty people, turning row ingredients into nurturing dishes, it is standing by pizza oven all day and night long, it is kissing the beloved with the whole being, it is destroying old rotten believes and patterns, it is melting blocking fears, it is dragging the bow onto the strings of the violin, it is making new decisions full of trust and hope; it is standing for my rights, for my wishes, for my dreams and hopes, for my needs, for my talents, for the truth as I understand it, with my voice, my hands and feet and with entire sparkling body, with embers in the bones of my soul: it is the Fire.
It is what it is:and it is supporting – and/or challenging – me in becoming more and more who I am.
With all materialised love I experienced on the right place with the right people on the right time.