Comuna De Rhiannon – Malchingui in pictures (part 2)
Last week I posted Part 1 where I shared some of my favourite photos I captured in Rhiannon, an eco-community I stayed at for 10 weeks while I was in Ecuador last November-February, if you’d like to check it out I explain a bit more about Rhiannon and what I did there.
Today I’m diving straight into the photos:
These are 2 beehives located on Rhiannon’s property. One of Nicky and Helen’s good friends, who is now living permanently at the commune, introduced them to bee-keeping and I was lucky enough to assist Helen one day. I got all kitted out in the beekeeper outfit and I had the smoker while Helen opened them up to check on their progress. One of the hives was very active and although they hadn’t produced enough honey for us to harvest they were busy working away, sadly the second had lost their Queen Bee so wouldn’t be producing any honey.
*Although as a vegan I don’t eat honey, I wouldn’t have a problem eating honey from these bees, or other private beekeepers locally as the issues I have with mass-produced honey aren’t applicable and these, and many others, are very well cared for and not harmed in the harveting process like more corporate beehives are.
The gorgeous kitten, Ofelia. Here she is sat on my journal as I was trying to catch up with news on one of my last days at Rhiannon, but she was so cute she got away with it. The story of Ofelia is very sweet too, a group of volunteers went to Quito on their days off and on the way back two of them, Nat and Darcy, saw an old man trying to get rid of the kitten and treating her badly, so they said they would take her. They brought her back to Rhiannon, named her after the bus station she was found at and paid for all her jabs and vaccinations.
A very pretty flower in the garden that made me smile, hence the photo. It has all my favourite shades of purple and yellow in one flower – perfection!
Ofelia the kitten getting to know the outdoors and trying to make friends with Cha-chee the cat Helen and Nicky already owned. It was definitely a love-hate relationship, Ofelia loved Cha-chee and Cha-chee hated Ofelia but by the time I left they were learning to co-exsist semi-harmoniously.
There were lots of different projects happening during my stay, my favourite being the construction projects. I helped build 2 dome-constructions, whilst the other construction team worked on this house. Rhiannon had previously had a pit dug and cemented, originally planned to be used as a bio-pit to create energy. When this didn’t work out they were left with a large pit in their grounds and a child that was just starting to walk. So James, Tyler and a few other volunteers took on the project to turn it into a house, they had to do everything from drawing the plans to budgeting to building. I recently saw some finished photos and it really does look amazing – and what an amazing view to see every day you work.
This is one of 3 vegetables gardens at Rhiannon. One of my jobs at Rhiannon was harvesting vegtables in the morning which were used for lunch and dinner that day, all organic of course, it was as fresh as it gets. The Uvias (sometimes called Physalis’) grew like weeds and tasted so good, I would always grab a couple as I harvested. Here is it really flourishing after a couple of days of unexpected rain. The orange-roofed caravan in the distance is one of the other housing options, which sleeps 3 and the roof-less greenhouse can be spotted on the left.
This is the very last photo I took at Rhiannon. This is the hand-painted wall in the living room, how amazing is it? I believe Nicky painted it shortly after they moved in and it was my favourite piece of art throughout the whole house and ground. I photographed it not only to remember it but in the hope to create something similar one day.
This is the very last photo my camera took at Rhiannon, I am 4th from left in the black jacket. The obligatory, standing outside and saying goodbye photo. The guy driving the taxi to take me into Malchingui and my bus to Quito took the photo, so straight after I said goodbye to everyone and left, and cried a lot! Even looking at this photo makes me miss everyone in it so much. But also, it makes me feel so grateful I got to have such an incredibly experience and make sure inspiring new friends from across the world.