We are couple from the Earth like we say, in our believing there are no borders. All is One. We met in festival “Masters of Rock” in Czech Republic in 2008. We were friends three years before we become a couple. Heldor was working in Norway and Eliise was finishing art school in Tallinn. In one summer, we had a spontaneous idea to buy an airplane tickets to Granada.
And then our story begins.
We arrived in Granada late evening, it was warm and romantic. We walked through the town up on the Sacramonte hill, where lived “cave people” and lots of hippies. We were both a bit paranoid of caves, so we decided to sleep in the tent. We were blessed to have the full moon that night, it was shining all night through the tent like a big lantern. In the morning we met our friend, who offered us shelter in his garden with a nice bungalow with hay roof. In the garden was a big tree with figs – it was a fig season, they fell everywhere. In this magical garden we fell in love with each other and figs.
After three weeks eating figs, we went to live in coast of south Spain for a month. There we lived naked and free, we washed ourselves in mountain spring and ate fruits what was growing there. It was our first experience with food forest.
After two months of perfect vacation, we needed to earn money for the next plans. Heldor already had a ticket to India, so we needed money for Eliise ticket and for travelling. We got a job in Sweden as a housepainter, with one month we had enough money for airplane ticket and living costs for six months in India. Eliise went through Turkey, Heldor went through Azerbaijan. The plan was, that Heldor will arrive two hours before Eliise in New Delhi but because of some problems, Heldor landed 8 hours after. Finally we were together, passed all the controls and get our luckage and ready for our adventure.
India have our souls and hearts – there all the dreams and wishes dawned and most of them have become reality for today.
Our first trip was with bicycles, we cycled 500 km through Karnataka, through the deserts and jungles. We truly believed that we are free souls, all is one and no animal had the idea to hurt us – we slept outside and only mosquito net was protecting us. In Nagarahole Jungle one car stopped and an Indian man asked: “Hello Sir! Have you seen any tiger today?” Luckily, we saw only monkeys, elephants, some snakes, a scorpion and many bugs and spiders. After our crazy trip, we heard that there have been many accidents how animals attack people, especially elephants who were drunk from eating fermented fruits.
Thanks to our crazy trip with bicycles, we met one nice Indian man named Pavith, who had a dream to build a jungle resort bungalow. Idea flashed through Heldors head – we can make Estonian triangle cottage with wooden roof! And the plan went to work, we build 4 cottages with wooden tile roof. The resort was in the middle of coffee plantation in the jungle – it was a mix of jungle, plantation and other plants like black pepper, chillies, bananas, and many other tropical plants. For now, the resort is working well with a beautiful garden with all the fruits and vegetables. There we had our first dream that we want to do something like this for our own.
After being in India, we felt homesick, but not for Estonia – more like we yearned after fresh water, clean air, solitude, and space. The best place where you can get all of that is Norway. We have worked and lived there many times and different places – Norwegian mountains has a special place in our hearts.
Heldor had worked from south to north Norway, mostly in some remote places where Norwegians do not want to go. One autumn evening Heldor got a call and had an offer for 7 months in Steigen to build fish factory. It is remote corner in Norway, work started in September and Eliise was also interested to join the trip. Arrived to Steigen, spectacular nature took our breaths. We settled there for our first full polar night, and we saw so many Aurora Borealis. In spring we decided to stay there with the best community in Norway for three years.
In the first summer our daughter Aurora was born. We worked in tourism business and did so many things more, but climate was too cold for agriculture. After three years in Steigen, we moved back to Estonia – it was the one of the best decision we had, because here we can make our food forest dream become true.
We have had travelled also in Australia and Tasmania, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thai, Sri Lanka, Taiwan and almost all over the Europe. Heldor is holding the list with 48 country, he has even a backpack with every country flag patch he visited.
Our third most travelled country is Italy. In India we met many Italians and all of them told that we are welcome in their homes. Now they have become like a part of family. We have visited them many times and each time we feel like home. In one moment we decided that we want to live there.
Together with our friends we started to look some old abandoned places. We wanted some ruins in the forest. Toscany was the best place for it. Our dream was to grow olive trees and grapes and live under the Toscany sun. But then we started to learn more about social systems in Italy and If you have a kid then you need to know what is your rights in the system. And we feeled that we can get stuck with the laws there and this plan is not going to work out for us if we want to grow pure food and grew up non vaccinated kid.
Back to the roots.
We have travelled so many places. Allmost bought the land in Sri Lanka. In Norway we had an opportunity to get the land from friends and also we almost bought the house there. Still we are back home. Because here we now the forest, the nature and the systems in laws.
Two years ago in winter we visited a Parmu Ecovillage in Valgamaa. We really liked that place. The people were nice and the area was amazing. So much forests around. The ecovillage people made us a tour of free places and also we visited the shiitake mushroom growing place. The road went through the big alley and there were a lot of ruins which are part of old Taheva mansion. We falled in love in that place and also we asked that is there something like this to sell. Over the shiitake mushroom fields is a view over the pond on the nice garden with beautiful old vodka distillery and stonewalled celler, also many ruins on the garden. It looked like Toscany.
We have found a place in Estonia what looks like the place we dreamed. Even more nicer. But this wasn’t on the market. We didn’t give up. After visiting many places we asked from the locals that who lives in this beautiful place and then everybody told that we should go to speak with them cause they are an old couple, maybe they want to sell.
We camed and the owners hwo was really warm hearted old couple. Kalju had the most beautiful blue eyes and Ellen was so lovely. Immiadetly she picked us tomatoes and berries and other stuff. Ellen really liked Aurora and because of Aurora she told that the deal is done. She sold it to us. Because they couldn’t survive here. The house needed renovation. And they didn’t have anymore energy to continue here. We were so happy and still its hard to believe that we actually did it.
Farm what we bought was 11 hectare. 8.9 hectare is one side of the road and another 2.1 hectare another side with buildings. We never owned so big area. And all the 8.9 hectare area is field. Almost no trees. Some hills and nothing more. When Heldor was building the roof he watched the land around. Up in the roof is good view and you have time to think. Finally we decided to tell the plans to the friends.
Our friends was actually really supporting. The idea was to build independent farm using the earthy methods. In 9 of December 2020 we made the Tsirgumäe Toidusalu MTÜ what is Tsirgumäe Food Forest NGO in English. It will be Food Forest for everybody. We have local community where is almost no food farms. All the land around is farmed by big companies. Local farms have sold the land for the big agriculture company. Now we have land where all of us can grow food.
The idea is to learn Northern area opportunities and learn together. We are in 57 latitude and have winters with -30. It will be learning process with all the people on earth. This was the dream since now. Now we live in a dream ☺