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Casas Que Cantan - "Houses That Sing"
There was a shack pieced together from the conglomerate of old metal, cardboard, black asphalt sheets and other scraps. It was typical of much of the housing in that area. We thought of going in, but knew the oppressive heat would be even more unbearable inside. Next to it was the building we had come to see, one of the first women's houses. With it's soft colored lime washed walls, hand shaped door and window moldings, it stood in striking contrast to the shack. A curving band of river stones added protection and texture to the base of the earthen and lime plastered walls.
The door opened and out stepped Myra, the owner. Smiling, she shyly welcomed us all in. Drastically cooler inside than it was outside, everyone sighed with relief as they escaped into the cozy room. The flagstone patterned floor made of recycled concrete pieces was refreshingly cool underfoot. The carrizo reed ceiling cast a warm glow on the plastered straw bale walls. Simply decorated, the two beds and other basic furnishings had obviously been positioned with great care.
"Oh, how wonderful!", exclaimed the guests. Myra's face beamed with pride and delight. Someone politely asked her, "What do you think of it?" Her head momentarily lowered, then with her large dark eyes she reflectively scanned her new home and quietly replied, "You know, I always thought to have something this beautiful you had to have a lot of money. But now I know you don't. You just have to be willing to work for it."
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