Oct 28, 2008

Leaving the Farm

Leaving home for a weekend is a bit different than it used to be. New priorities, new passions, and new responsibilities.

After lighting a fire to warm the house, preparing an oatmeal and home-grown-egg breakfast, cycling with Galen to school, and shaking down the schoolyard apple tree to get the last fresh, unbruised and unbitten offerings for our Vancouver friends, Zekiah and I got right to work. We buried the chicken that died from old age (we think), and put in an extra feeder and water can for the surviving flock who'll have to stay in the coop for the whole weekend. Set out the rat traps too - they outnumber our egg-layers by atleast 3:1.

Next we broke open another 20 bulbs of garlic, re-hoed the last row we'd fertilized last week with seaweed, and planted all 140 or so cloves. We raked heaps of maple leaves onto a big blue tarp and hauled them down to cover all 3 garlic beds for the winter. We also did a quick harvest of our own apple and pear trees to take to Vancouver.

Set out fresh food, water and litter for our cat Syd, then had to find him to lock him in the basement - a weekend of rat-hunting in our crawl space should earn his keep. Checked on the new storm windows to make sure they'll actually stay up in a storm.

All this time Sarah was juggling preparation for teaching a weekend birth class and processing the last four batches of carmelized apple butter - a continuation of last night's midnight apple sauce marathon, finally finishing the 2-child-bike-trailer-full load of apples from the schoolyard and Brock & Heather. Also finished baking some bread to go with our apple butter and fresh CSA farm produce for our Avoid WhiteSpot ferry picnic.

The house may have been left in a mess, but the new thing for me was my strong drive to get things done outside. I really wanted to get our garlic crop in and mulched, and to finish processing the apples for our winter sustenance. I felt a compassionate responsibility to treat the old dead chicken well, and a deep concern to take care of our chickens as well as our cat. And we deeply wanted to share (OK, and show off) our natural island bounty with our Vancouver friends.

If this is what being "tied to the land" is like, I think I'd rather call it "connected", and I think I like it. At some point out in our garlic field, a bumber sticker came to me - Old hippies don't die, they just go back to the land.

No comments:

Post a Comment