This week I built a cabinet above the sink. This will hold water bottles, dishes, cereal boxes, or whatever seems appropriate as the build progresses. The finish on this cabinet should give you an idea of the primary interior design elements for the rest of the van (natural wood splitting space with semi-gloss white paint).
The stain on the center of the cabinet door is American Chestnut. I wanted this color specifically because the story behind the American Chestnut is fading out of our consciousness as a country.
Until 1904 the American Chestnut was a dominant tree species throughout the Appalachian region on the East Coast. Mature trees could reach 100 feet, and 14 feet in diameter. And it was common building material for barns in the region because of its resistance to decay.
But in 1904 a fungus imported from Japan caused an immediate widespread die off of the species. As a result very few remain.
Modern day efforts to revive the species include genetically modifying seeds which are resistant to the fungus. Back in college I actually got to visit a small nursery of struggling saplings on the forefront of a species revival. One day, perhaps, the American Chestnut will reach the heights it once saw in Appalachia.
In other news, the solar panels were oh so close to being up today. But unfortunately the bolts were unreasonably difficult to install, so we had to save the modification for another day.
Here's a glimpse at how the solar will turn out: