(soaked overnight, at least. Seen here in a tub under a plywood lid to keep mosquitoes out.)
For a small batch, We use two buckets of sand. For wall-strength we use crushed sand, so it holds together. For the plaster coat, We will use beach sand for a nice polished look.
Plop the bucket of clay over the mound of sand, in a little crater you made with your foot. Kick the sand over the clay to “Corndog” it. (Watch the groin muscles! This can really hurt you the next day.) Then start stomping!
The mix begins.
And cookie dough consistency is achieved!
You know you’re there when it rolls up like a nice, smooth log (insert 4th-grade humor here).
Sprinkle straw on the log and stomp it flat. Sprinkle more straw and roll and stomp until incorporated throughout. (It’s incorporated! Now It’s a Person, according to some…)
Take a little break. Squish it onto the wall and stab it all over with a stick (Dibble) to “sew” layers together with the straw and leave a rough surface for future layers to key into.
Now, repeat 3,000 times or so. Voila! Cob haven!