Staying in love

Staying in love

It's the middle of August.  The broccoli is done, for the first time since it came on in June, for about a month.  Spinach has been missing for while, each planting succumbing to premature bolting before we can get anything out of it.  Bok choy seems like a long-ago dream by this point.  Radishes, salad turnips, green onions, cilantro, kale-- all those enthusiastic harbingers of spring harvest season have come and gone.  In their wake we're left with corn, eggplant, and celery.   Red and yellow peppers, finally ripening to fullness in the greenhouses and fields.  Heirloom tomatoes finally glowing in mismatched collections, melons almost ready to burst, Asian pears ripening to yellow, bigger than in years past.

And exhausted as I am by the harvest, blinded to the vividness of each tomato by the sheer abundance of them, I still find myself giddy on a regular basis. 

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Coming back to the farm

Coming back to the farm

Coming back.  Coming back, after a week in the woods-- a simple distillation of life into basic tasks, immediate surroundings, present sensations-- was originally difficult.  I covered for Ted on Saturday and over the weekend for irrigation, and I wasn't ready to dive back in.  I hadn't slept well yet, I wasn't used to the sunshine and heat, and my mind was still far away, dreaming of a future in which I can awake to birdsong and meadows rather than trainsong and city streets.  Coming back, until I could resettle quietly into my home and routine, felt like a burden.

There's still- always- so much to do.

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Recipe for magic

I've mentioned the Youth Farm magic in the past.  It shines when the plants we have for a bed fit exactly from end to end with no extras, or the right person drops in exactly when we need their help, or the rains hold off just long enough for us to till and prep the beds for need for the next planting.  Friday felt full of that magic.  There were a few moments of obvious serendipity: Ted appearing with the last bag of plant sale labels right as the small group that'd been labelling pots all morning had just run out and was about to move on to another project, and Kiya starting her shift, ready to lead, exactly as several volunteers needed a new project and I had to finish up our seeding for the week.  There's clear moments like those, yes, but overall a magic-infused day just has a certain flow to it.  And I'm coming to understand that I have the power to create the flow, whether or not everything seems to line up perfectly.

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A fell swoop

A fell swoop

Tuesday, October 25.  Good a day as any for the first frost of the season.  I had been anticipating it for weeks, trailing off to imagine the frantic covering of rows and harvesting of tomatoes and basil that, in the end, didn't happen.  We were all-- rough yellow basil, split tomatoes, puny zucchinis, worn down hands-- ready.  We knew it was coming.  We'd been waiting and wondering and not really sure if a few degrees would really matter.  Yes: everything changed in one night.

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