- The electrical wiring, in metal clad conduit to contain EMFs is done.
- We had to move one of the grey water tanks to allow me to have my shower at the entrance, but all of the interior plumbing is done, with Aquatherm non-toxic pipe.
- The subfloor, extra insulation, and poplar sleepers have been installed, and the white oak flooring goes down this coming week.
- The metal walls are all installed.
- The external access storage cubbies are finished.
- We've ordered Filzfelt Akustika panels for the ceiling. This is a non-toxic acoustic panel, covered with 100% wool felt that is free of toxic chemicals.
- We've ordered felt wall coverings for my bedroom walls and the counters and window seat formed by the external access storage units.
It's been a hard winter, and I'm not talking about cold, because Boston's winter was frighteningly mild this year. I spent a lot of the last few months running my IndieGoGo campaign, with various members of my team dealing with crises that led to their dropping out. In January, my beloved father died unexpectedly, which brought not only our own grief, but that of a worldwide network of friends, colleagues and admirers. It also means that I must vacate my family home very soon, so it can be sold to pay off various tax and medical debts. So it's been hard to keep my web presence up to date.
But my campaign raised $18,000, and individual donors and lenders contributed another $24,500, so I am able to buy supplies and pay my crew, which has kept the Vehicle construction process moving forward throughout this difficult time.
Our biggest challenge has been getting the help we need to design the solar power system that will allow me to live off grid and will reduce my carbon footprint. Local solar companies only work on residences or businesses that are tied to the grid, and several companies said they would help us and then didn't follow through. We finally connected with Real Goods, the pioneer solar company in Sebastopol, California, and they have been helping us design our system, but we still can't find a local installer.
We're putting a lot of attention on the details of my mobile internet access, choosing the water heater, and figuring out how to weigh the trailer so we can buy the right size truck.
The next few weeks will see a lot of changes at the Vehicle as we move toward the finish line.
Aurora Levins Morales is a chronically ill and disabled writer, historian, visual artist, and activist