We are a married couple living in Namaqualand, South Africa, in a small village living a natural, artistic lifestyle and building with cob, a centuries old building tradition. We are about to embark on a number of building projects around our house, which is an old clay-brick house.
If you are reasonably fit and want to learn the wonderful art of cobbing, we offer free accommodation in our house for two weeks or longer. The cobbing course takes the form of doing a specific building project. You will be living in a creative, laid-back atmosphere, sharing the house with us. Bob is also an artist (painting & sculpting), so artists are most welcome. Our 12 year old daughter is musical, so there is always a guitar, djembe drum, keyboard and rattles in the house and if your are musically inclined you are welcome to use them.
We can take two people at a time. We take people for two weeks at a time, but if you feel you want to stay longer and that is convenient for us as well, your stay can be extended.
In return for accommodation and free cobbing course, we will expect you to muck in with cleaning, tidying and cooking as we ourselves do. Cobbing is hard physcial work, so you must be prepared to do that. However, there will be time for leisurely meals, walks, etc. You will carry your own transport costs from wheverever you are living to the village and back once your course is completed(taxis run daily from Cape Town) and we will expect you to contribute food (of your own choice) for meals, which we cook and take together. We are both smokers, so consider whether you could accommodate that before deciding you would like to join us.
We employ a cleaning lady three times a week - we will expect you to contribute towards her renumeration what you consider fair in return for the extra workload that results from more people in the house and for doing your laundry. You will find this handy after a long day's cobbing! Artists must bring their own materials. We have three dogs and a cat sharing our space. We also have a fully stocked herb garden for those into their herbal teas and natural cooking. If you can, bring a camera to record your experience - visuals also come in handy when you start doing your own cob-projects. Alternatively Bob has done an illustrated manual which you can copy, carrying the costs of the copying yourselves.
Please note that, in the true spirit of cobbing, we are offering a learning experience and therefore no renumeration is applicable. We offer the course and accommodation free, in return you help with the building projects while sharing chores and food costs.
Our way of life here is unrushed, earthy and honest. If you think you would enjoy doing this for a couple of weeks or more, email us at [email protected]