While Shannon McIntyre (who put up the early Dispatch from the South and who, with THLLC partner David Hooke, comprise the true population of southern Gnomes) will no doubt be adding further dispatches, I couldn’t resist a post of my own (Josh). Having made the drawings for the frame, and with the most experience in compound roof framing, I was fortunate enough to be invited down for the final week of cutting Hip and Jack Rafters and to assist in raising the frame. And what a raising it was! David and I originally met while working together on The Mountain School’s new cow barn and we both agreed that a community project, like these, offers something magical. Rarely have I felt so immediately and deeply welcomed and rarely have I seen people work so hard, so selflessly, and so kindly together. I suppose it is in keeping with their name – The Friends. Of course, the Costa Ricans refer to them as Los Quakeros, and you do have to be a little crazy to undertake a 30×60 timber frame with clearspan kingpost trusses in tropical woods and no crane and all the joinery cut by volunteers! As I sit in my office at home, looking out on snow still covering the hill behind the house and nursing a still tender finger (pinched between two horses as I moved them and, I believe, the worst injury of the week), I think of the fresh mangoes, the walk from house to jobsite through cloudforest, the many smiles and long days of pulling together and I say to myself, that is my kind of crazy.