Saturday, 4 December 2010


Wilderland is a charitable educational trust which was set up in 1964. Many people refer to it as a hippie commune, which is completely wrong, the garishly painted 1970's wooden houses may give that impression, so too can the members' faded, worn out clothes, which in fact are a result of working on the land in bright sunshine and their frequent washing.
This stay was my third over a 10-year period. Their main source of income has been from produce and value added products sold in the organic shop, which is situated on the main road nearby. This time I was the shop keeper on two occasions. Herbal Maori teas, crafts, traditional skin care potions and creams, creams for bites and cuts, the much vaunted manuka honey, as well as three other types, freshly squeezed citrus juices, macademia nuts and many other fruits and vegetables.
The tipi

Now the community is moving more towards education and outreach within the local community. Partnerships with business and commerce can serve as a valuable link for those who have no experience of living in harmony close to the beautiful local environment, which was once occupiedas aMaori settlement and burial site many years ago. To use the land special permission had to be obtained. The sois are deep and dark. The gardens are set in small clearings set within the local native fauna.

Part of one of the citrus orchards

Each morning we assemble, after breakfast and get task assignments, which are both educational and well supervised. We work for four hours to fulfil our part of the exchange, before sitting down to a meal produced largely within the community and cooked by one of the team.
My time here has been quite magical, with laughter, good communication, openess and acceptance by younger people, which is pretty unique, and with healthy vegetarian food.
I will be out of action for the next two weeks because I will be attending a 10-day course in Vipassana meditation. During the period i will not be able to talk, a very hard thing for me, but I have done one before and survived

The rock pool is used after the sauna

Interior of the shop

A Wilderland view

The Pink House

Lunch time

Sauna in the bush


Older transport

The Dome House

Long drop composting toilet

Garden furniture!

Tipi: interior

Rob weeding

At home on the range

1 comment:

raphe said...

nic pics. All the best with the Vipassana