Friday, March 8, 2013

Back to the Blog: Farm Wrap Up & Walking the World

Hey guys,

The last week has been a whirlwind. Annie and I left the farm and our lovely Bluffton friends last Sunday to begin the walk. I didn't post for the last few days on the farm because I was just so tired!   Annie and I have been discussing the importance of hard work on this trip, and farmers embody that in a very physical way. It's draining! You come home, shower, and want dreamland. Of course you eventually adjust but I don't think I got to that threshold in the two weeks at White Oak Pastures...


The last days of farm work contained my favorite tasks--harvesting collard greens, kale, and CARROTS. Besides feeling like Bugs Bunny, pulling up carrots is about the most satisfying thing in the world!!!

The farm is a visual feast. The colours. The textures. Seeing plants and animals grow. Here's some more of that:
Uprooted cabbage. Clearing beds for
new crops.

Cabbage ROSE

Cabbage, kale, dinosaur kale!

Thinning sprouts in the greenhouse.*

*After plants have sprouted in the greenhouse, trays need to be thinned to one plant in each square; usually when planting seeds two or three are planted in case there's trouble with growth.  If more than one sprouts, the others are plucked out to create room for the one guy that's gonna grow BIG.

Other farm tasks in those last few days included cutting wire ("hoops") for the beds of plants--the wire is cut a certain length and then a handful of hoops are stuck at either side of the beds to create a half circle shape that the row cover is then placed on and secured to the ground. The hoops are beneficial because they give the plants room to grow while still allowing for the benefits of row cover, which protects from the elements.

Cindy and I cut hoops for a few hours. Big job! Finsihed
products hang nice and shiny, ready to use.

Gil washing the baby greens

Cindy and Jay, our colleagues at the farm hosted a bonfire on the Saturday before we left White Oak.  We spent Saturday baking up a storm to bring to Cindy's and Lori made an AMAZING gluten free carrot cake. Thanks for hosting a great evening Cindy and Jay!! And thanks for the live entertainment :) (Jay is a gifted guitar player and jammed with Annie around the bonfire.)
And that, my friends, ended our time at White Oak. The next morning we got the gear we packed up and started the next leg of our journey. We stayed with our friend Lea from the farm on day 1--thanks so much for sharing your home with us, Lea!

PART II: The Walk

March 3--Day 1 of walk

Chattahoochee River--about to cross over into Alabama!

 In two days I think we talked to three sherriffs/police men. Hilarious. Annie talked about what we were doing. I may have the honors in the near future.  We set up camp at a church, met the praise team, and got to listen to them practice, which was an incredible expereince. They have such talent and enthusiasm. They also prayed for my knee, which was flaring up from an old high school injury.  Thank you Mount Olive!

 Mount Olive Praise Team

The next day we crossed over into Eufaula, got some groceries and new shoes for me, had AMAZING donuts from The Doughnut King.  It doesn't look like these guys have a website, as it's a hole in the wall, but their donuts are tremendous. 

We stopped by a coffee shop called The Blue Moon and met the owner, Terry. We told her what we were up to with the walk and she invited us to an art benefit happening that night in a historic mansion called Fendall Hall. (Sort of similar to the Varnum House in East Greenwich for all you Rhode Island readers, but waay bigger.) The community art club sets up an annual benefit in which  local artists auction off their work amidst a fun wine and cheese night. Terry was a great host and introduced us to many community members. We met the president of the Friends of Fendall Hall organization, Carol, who lived in Rhode Island for a few years with her husband! She gave us an intimate tour of the house which really rocked.  We met local artists, poets, and the mayor of Eufaula--it was a fabulous evening of art and antebellum architecture.

We were going to stay  a Presbyterian church in town but Terry put us up in an awesome little motel free of charge through a friend connection and was even further ridiculously generous with us--she introduced us to the staff of the coffee shop, her husband, and told us about her amazing son Bobby. Thank you so much for your generosity Terry!

More soon--


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