We made it to Holden Village! We arrived on Wednesday afternoon and were warmly welcomed by the entire Holden community waving to us as we entered the village. Since getting here, we have gotten to know the village and people, started class and our work positions, and dived into outdoor activities and craft projects.
Winter in the Mountains
When we arrived last Wednesday, we were greeted with large snow piles and temperatures below zero. Even though living in the Midwest somewhat prepared us for the cold weather, it has been colder than normal here and everyone has been especially bundled up. We also got quite a bit of snow over the past few days.
In addition to getting used to the snow and cold, we have had extensive winter safety training to prepare us for outdoor adventures. An avalanche guru named Mr. Em came to work with us over the weekend to stay safe while skiing, snowshoeing, or doing other activities in the snow.
The Holden Schedule
While the schedule at Holden is pretty relaxed, it took a little time to get into the rhythm. We have class every day and have already had several interesting discussions about environmental issues in the Pacific Northwest and around the country. We also all have work positions as we are considered short-term staff while we are here. Most people are working in the kitchen or doing manual labor. It has been a nice opportunity to get to know more people in the village. Besides class, work, and meal time, the other constant is a vespers service, which brings the community together each day for worship.
The Holden schedule has provided a lot of time for various activities. On one of our first days, almost all of us went sledding. There has also been time for snowshoeing and skiing. A lot of us have enjoyed the "Craft Cave" which has allowed us to test out weaving, basket making, and pottery.
We are excited for the remaining two weeks of our time at Holden and all the learning, adventures, creations, and community that will come with it!