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  • Writer's pictureAna Philibert


When my brother invited me to a project in Baja California, I had no idea what to expect. I only knew that I would live in a camp in the middle of nowhere, with more people who had said yes to the adventure.

I took a flight that took me to an alternate reality, to an experience that became one of the best of my life. I came to Crania without knowing that I would fall in love with the place and that this group of people with different histories, nationalities and personalities would soon become my family. It was like arriving to a home I didn't know existed.

It all started when a group of creatives and a little crazy, met in this place to build a project that started from scratch. In the middle of cranes and nature, Crania started to take shape thanks to the combination of talents: architects, designers, photographers, chefs, musicians, producers and visionaries. We all believed in the project and dared to “board it”, like a ship that would take us to live in a parallel world.

I lived in Crania for almost three months and no day was the same, they all happened unexpectedly. If I managed to wake up early, the day began with a colorful sunrise and a dip in the sea.

Other days I would go in my pajamas straight to breakfast, which always began with morning hugs and a circle around the table, holding hands in gratitude. Sometimes the simplest things become the most meaningful and this tradition became one of my favorite moments of the day.

Rarely with a plan, the day passed between "house" chores and "office" work, all doing our own thing but always helping each other. Days of work and afternoon gatherings, sharing ourselves in activities such as bonfire, women's circle, open mic, and jewelry or dance classes.

Saturday arrived and with it, the adrenaline of the event. After days of planning it was time to experience it. Showered and dressed up, we were ready to open the doors, excited about what was about to happen.

A selection of talented DJs moved our every fiber and made everyone dance, taking the party to a whole new level. A celebration of life.

Every detail was part of the experience. My favorite part: working as a team and together making it happen.

The crew was divided into kitchen, floor, bar and cashier, which was my role. There, between orders, I witnessed the magic that happened in the kitchen and would sometimes try the delicious food that the chefs prepared.

Sundays were for relaxing and our favorite family tradition: spending the whole day on the beach with nothing but a sunshade. The whole day ahead, a virgin beach, the sea and a show of whales jumping in the distance. Under that shade, alongside many of my favorite people, I had the best days.

From these months I take with me many incredible memories and experiences. Moments, learnings and friendships that stay with me for life. But above all I take with me the experience of living in community and sharing so much. Of belonging and connecting with our own magic to share it. Of co-creating with so many minds and talents, expressing our creativity in this canvas of infinite possibilities. Of working as a team and always taking care of each other.

I learned to live in community and to share with 15 other people, to be happy living in a tent in the middle of nowhere. I learned that you can create a family in a very short time, that creativity is fueled by collective energy, that the party can start at 7 in the morning and that some falls can be fun.

Who would have thought that a kitchen could be so full of memories and that we would share so many stories around the fire. That sometimes all you need is a lot of good morning hugs or to dance while preparing food. Who would have thought that we would become so close and that we would treasure this place forever.

That saying YES can take you to unexpected places, to meet people who surprise you. That these places and people soon become your favorites and change your life. Thanks Crania for being that place. Thank you Cranians for being those people.

Thank you Mariana Arrieta for your photographs that tell this story better than worlds.


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