Do we look like two soldiers in the pic above? We are settling into a workflow now. There’s Atticus who loves freeing things like trees encircled in wire, limestone paths covered in dirt, or fieldstone fences drowning in hostas. He wants to see progress now, dammit, now. There’s Walter who won’t let anyone weed anything because of medicinal properties and nutrients. Stinging nettle can cure blah blah blah and purslane tastes delicious with blah blah blah. There’s my nephew Graham who loves the slash and burn approach. He has sharpened the antique tools hanging on the walls of the chicken coop and if I don’t keep a close watch, the 40-year-old tamarack pine will be pruned into a telephone pole in an afternoon. There’s Nick who is painting chickens and Jane who pets chickens and Liz who names chickens and George who says chickens are dicks.
Many areas of the farm make me swoon. Other parts make me hyperventilate. My husband and I face a vast task ahead.
Yet it feels like summer vacation every single day. The bare grass on my feet and the itch of mosquito bites are like a muscle memory. I pierced my toe with a pitchfork and marvel at the blood. I scraped my face on a chicken box and just kept going because gathering eggs is so flipping fun. Our work is play. There are endless things to do and nothing to do. It is heaven.
I’m shocked to discover that God is everywhere. Atheism is hard to maintain in August on a flower farm. I suppose that atheism and nature grow in inverse proportion.
And dirt, man, it’s relative. There is such a thing as clean dirt. I’ve enjoyed watching Dona, my husband’s favorite new helper, eat her granola with grubby hands. She’s healthy as a horse, with the strength of a carnival strongman and the endurance of Betty White. A diet of good dirt must be one of her secrets to prolonging her youth.
Anyway, here’s a video from our first week. We’ve already made quite a dent. More to come of course!