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When you lived in Baja in the "old days" -- and by that, I mean the 1990's! - you might have had electric up in Mexicali, Tijuana or down south (La Paz and Cabo). Almost anywhere between, forget it. Where we were, in the San Felipe Desert we were all on solar power up until 2001, give or take. No one asked, but looking back I believe the power lines undermined the basic magic of the place in many ways. For one thing, tv worked fine on solar if you used it right. We even had a washer and a dryer and a microwave. Lights, fans, stereos, etc., not a problem. This mini-house is not as modern as our real house, and would have run on 6 panels (we had 38). The people? Well, they're on the beach - or maybe, down at the cantina, anyway. When they're home, maybe they read, or paint, or sculpt, or just sit around the fire with their friends. Now, you can get the internet down there but up through '99 we had to go to town and use the internet cafe. That wasn't so bad, either! By the way that painting on the mantle is a reproduction (done in miniature of course) of a painting by my good friend Donna who is still living there, today. Nearly everything you see here represents a Baja friend, including the hand-painted pebbles (book ends) on the shelves, done especially for this project by my good friend Joan. In real life, she paints larger rocks.
The little door right beside the sofa, is the "Window of Truth." Straw bale homes always have these little doors, and if you opened it you'd see the straw inside the walls. Not only is straw bale very Green (and now becoming very popular), it's a great insulator. Seems the older ways are coming back!
In the Memories in Miniature photo essay.
Also by Nadya Johnson
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