From: Sanda Everette (
Date: Mon, 25 Nov 1996 12:56:43 -0600
We had a fire early this morning at Dragon Belly Farm on the Olympic 
Penisnsula in Washington State. 

I know our situation is not as great of a tragedy as was the fire at 

Most of you don't know us because we were very small.  We bought our 
land without a group and were looking for a group.  When that was 
harder than expected and we were running out of money, I returned to 
California 3 years ago to work. My husband stayed on the land managing 
the land and developing the agricultural part of the project and 
continued seeking partners.  This past summer we rented our house to a 
family which was very interested in what we were doing and my husband 
joined me in California to continue earning money and networking. (A 
long distance relationship for three years can be stressful.)

Margaret called at 6am.  Our home burned to the ground about an hour 
earlier.  They barely got out with their lives.  In addition to 
Margaret and her partner and Margaret's two young daughters and 
teenage son, her daughter and son-in-law and their two babies were 
visiting for the weekend.  They were planning to move into a mobile 
home on the land next month. He got up early about 4:30 morning to 
commute to his job south of Seattle and saw the fire.  For some reason 
the smoke alarm did not go off.  They lost everything they owned.  Her 
visiting daughter had brought her laundry so they lost most of their 
clothes as well.  They had no insurance.  It was something that had 
planned to get but their budget did not yet allow.

Hopefully our insurance is in place so that we can rebuild.  We will 
consider whether or not a cohousing project will ever happen on our 
land and if so, build with some common house concepts in mind.  We may 
have to make some decision earlier than we expected to make them.

Thanks for giving me the place to share my feelings.  I realize I 
haven't done that, just said what happened.  I have been trembing for 
the last several hours.  There are lots of questions in my mind.  I am 
at work.  I am a special education teacher.  My students are being 
cooperative and supportive.  I am worried about Margaret and her 
family.  My husband will probably have to return to Washington to 
facilitate our house being rebuilt.  We will contact the folks at 
Rosewind Cohousing in Pt. Townsend 17 miles away. 
<>  Some of their 
member are in a construction cooperative.  If they are not too busy 
with their own construction, we would like them to rebuild our house.

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