Help care for wildflower meadow and woodland in Hunsruck National Park, Germany.

Country

Germany

Favourited 41 times


  • rating

    Host rating

  • feedbacks

    Feedback

    3  

  • last activity

    Last activity

    09/04/2019

  • Badges

 
  2020 
J
F
M
A
M
J
J
A
S
O
N
D
  • Description

    Description

    I am seeking (preferably) an English, German or French native speaking NON-SMOKING (this is important) man to help with the final part of my house renovation in Germany. Most of it is complete, but maintenance and minor improvement is needed. I am also restoring my small native woodland and wildflower meadow after decades of neglect and poor management to encourage the return of wildlife.

    I am on the eastern edge of Hunsruck National Park, half a day by bike from the city of Trier, Luxembourg and France.

    I have to go to town for the Internet, it might be a few weeks to answer.

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    Gardening
    General Maintenance
    Help with Eco Projects
    Language practice

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    I am a well travelled backpacker and speak English, German, Spanish and some French. I would be happy to share my time helping you with language learning. I am passionate about the nature reserve that I have created and would love to share my knowledge of the plants and wildlife that share this little piece of paradise with me.

  • Help

    Help

    As I care for my land as a private nature reserve I mow the wildflower meadow in August-September to encourage the return of native wildflowers, insects, birds, reptiles and mammals. I have greater butterfly and pyramid orchids and fritillaries amongst the myriad of flowers. It has taken several years to re-establish the variety of flowers that I have and it still needs a few more years. However it is only hard work for one week a year.

    I still have 16 fir and poplar trees to be felled for firewood and replanted with native deciduous trees, including oak, beech, birch, cherry, poplar, hazel etc. So far I have planted over 1000 trees. Someone with a chainsaw will fell the remaining firs and saw into 25cms lengths, leaving collection, chopping and stacking to be done. I hope that the tree felling will be complete by the end of February 2016. The chopping will take a little longer.

    Refurbishing a small one-storey house - refurbishment of the cellar is the last big job that I can do. I would like to replace the roof, but that is a professional job, not for me and not for you!

    I also want to finish the stone paths and need another 20 tonnes of basalt for that and install 3 ponds.

    Any NON-SMOKING male who is (as a preference) a native speaker of English, German, or French is welcome. I have VERY LIMITED internet access where I live in Germany and now have to travel 80 kilometres to an Internet Cafe in Mainz and normally access only once a season, so be patient waiting for an answer or plan ahead. I have an old mobile with NO internet connection and I am happy with it! Getting an internet connection on a new I-phone proved impossible for one visitor.

    I will not work you to excess. I ask for a MAXIMUM of 5 hours a day, 5 days a week and I will work with you and depending when you come there will be very little work anyway. I will regard you as a visiting friend who will give some help whilst enjoying the area with me. I no longer work long hours and wish to enjoy what I have achieved and would like you to also enjoy it. I want you to enjoy being with me and I want to enjoy your company. I can no longer afford to travel long term, so the next best thing is to bring a traveller to me.

  • Languages spoken

    German: Fluent
    English: Fluent
    Spanish: Fluent
    French: Beginner

  • Accommodation

    Accommodation

    In warm months: one week in a large tent, then one week in the bed in the house (we will swap weekly as I don´t feel right keeping the bed all for me). Alternatively camping on the floor in the lounge. I have 3 sleeping bags, so you don´t need to bring one.

    The house is comfortable and warm, but not luxurious compared to modern standards. In a house of 40m2 there is no privacy, so you need to consider this.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    Frankfurt Hahn (HHN) is the nearest airport and is used by Ryanair. From 29/8/16 there are a no longer any buses. Monday to Friday 1 bus goes to the airport at 1400. That's right one bus to and no bus back! Taxi is 40€ each way.
    Frankfurt Main (FRA) airport is one and a half hours by train to Idar-Oberstein station and then 30 minutes by bus to the forest. This is the easiest way by public transport. Saarbrucken (SCN) airport is about the same by train-bus. (up to 9 buses from town Mon-Fri)
    If you are travelling from Britain by Eurostar you can connect to trains from Paris to Frankfurt, which stop in Saarbrucken. More convenient via Brussels and Frankfurt. I prefer to use ferry/train (Harwich/Hook van Holland) and it is an 8 hour train journey to Idar-Oberstein. (bahn.de for times, note Hoek, not Hook in German).
    From France trains travel via Metz to Forbach and then normally you have to change to a local train to Saarbrucken. TGV and ICE travel direct from Paris to Saarbrucken.

    My hamlet is almost in the middle of nowhere, so it will only suit someone wishing to escape from modern life. Maybe you want to write, play your guitar, study, escape a stressful or difficult period in your life. Here could be a great place for you and if I can help you then I will do so. I have 2 bicycles, so trips by bike are possible. There are a lot of walking routes.
    I speak English (native), German and Spanish to a very good level and have basic French (but am learning) and if you wish to practise your languages then fine by me.
    There is cross-country skiing most winters (not yet a ski owner, but they are on my list) and if you have your own transport downhill skiing 15kms away for a couple of months most years. The area is famed for the gemstone trade and there are mines and museums to visit. There are great walks, Celtic forts, big river valleys, vineyards and castles. The city of Trier is the most interesting of the area, but also Mainz and Koblenz are good.

    About me: I am a backpacker of twenty years, living in one place when I like it, for as long as I like it. (2yrs New Zealand, 2yrs Australia, 7yrs Spain...) I do not need all mod cons - neither do I have the money for them, but like to be warm and comfortable. I would prefer to have an extra month´s holiday without a lot of money, than work a month for modern things that I really do not need. Time is more important to me than modern excess. In Germany I have found a little piece of paradise in the forest where I am happy to spend my time, even if it has been a lot of work to get this far. At times it has been very stressful, but that is behind me now.
    Apart from the building and land I spend my time walking in the forest, cycling, reading, studying and writing. When there is more time I would like to return to painting.

    I am an open and honest person who hates mind games and oneupmanship. I am a little shy in groups and much prefer one-to-one. I try to treat people in the way in which I would like to be treated. I hate the mindless use of mobile phones for pointless chit-chat. They are a great tool, but I think that they are now used to avoid conversation or real life. I like to talk with the person with me and not give attention to a phone. I don´t feel as if I fit into what the world has become in the past ten years. I value highly the company of a genuine and good person and that cannot be bought or sold.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

    • Can host families

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    One

  • ...

    Hours expected

    15 to 20 a week.

I love the winter. The air is so dry that I hardly notice -5C.
Five small waterfalls are lovely to listen to and provide more habitat in the small ponds above them. 2013
Water proofed roof... quite important and a growing meadow soon to be mown. 2014
Everything has a place in a small home. 2013
A little house is quick to clean and easy to heat. Why want more? 2013
Main room complete. Insulated floor & ceiling and nice and light with the new doors. So warm in winter! 2013
the setting sun from the verandah
orderly firewood stacks
new woodland planting along path. 2011
The bathroom - the only completed part of the house. 2011
the stream before dam building and fir tree removal. 2009
compost making under snow 2009
The house. The new part is the kitchen and bathroom. Now part double glazed and with water and electricity. A milestone reached. 2010
General view of Hunsruck
the lane to my house


Host ref number: 423497446292