It is 10 o’clock, March 10th, 2017. Our meeting is on the first floor at The Contemporary Architects Association. We’re a new group but the decision is the same as last year’s. To build out of soil, in Esfahak, Southern Khorasan, to go by train, 17 hours away. This time we’ll build what they want us to. “an observatory”. In a lot near the school. A circle for twenty people to gather around. One meter above ground level. Various halfway done designs are built on the tables. We choose one and decide to keep working on it. Three concentrated circles. The one at the center is the highest one and will be where man meets the sky. And two other circles that encompass a single person passageway that leads to the center. The place where we don’t want to see anything other than the sky itself. The walls go up and a week later, the job is done. We clean the surroundings and stand back with our mortar covered hands to observe. The observatory dream is ready. Two days later we leave for Esfahak. We arrive at midnight. Now we are a group from Montréal, from London, from Tehran, Kerman and Mashhad. What loud noise has brought us all together? Our work with adobe starts. Clean and ironed clothes are soon covered with soil. With each brick over the other, row over row, we get to know ourselves better. One by going back and forth between different tasks and another by constantly working on a single one. Practice makes perfect. We gather at nights and try to stay awake as much as we can. Our bodies are worn out and that means that, for the first time, our bodies are there –present. How could we ever go back? The next days, newly shaped clouds, the wall keeps going up, people talk with us through the wholes of the cob wall. We have as many visitors as the adobe bricks we have used so far. Now the walls have gone so far up. We’re inside and our connection with the world outside is severed. The sky is overhead and now we must work at nights with whatever lighting we can get. We get to observe the starry sky before anyone else. We put up the middle wall last. With a 45 degree rotation per each adobe brick. The texture it creates looks like the palm trees we see every day and perhaps sleep in their shadows. We build the biggest palm tree in Esfahak with our newly acquired and faster skills. The last days everyone comes to help. Mustafa, Mohsen, Reza, Adel and the rest. It’s the last rows of brick and the wall has gone far higher up than our height. We are already missing this all. You can’t see the entire work from a single place. It doesn’t fit in our eyesight. We go up again to the central innermost circle, one meter above ground level. It’s as if we’re on top of a castle. Our work is done. We built it. We conquered it. The observatory doesn’t need us anymore. It can stand on its own. How do we go back? In silence. Hurt and hopeful. We are discoverers.