Farm sunrise. When the world feels both new and old.
In three weeks, I will pack up one corner of a wood-and-canvas tent, my little nest for sleeping on the CASFS Santa Cruz farm. I will turn out my pockets to leave behind unwanted seeds, shake fine dust off of fleece blankets, and pull maps and photos off the walls. I will leave a part of myself behind here, in newly shaped beds and seeds taking root. My body will be marked, too, in the tiny, tough callouses on my palms, skin a deeper shade of brown, and fading scars that tell a story of wild blackberries.
In three weeks, six months of a farm apprenticeship will come to an end. There will be a mad exchange of phone numbers and recipes and goodbyes as 46 farm apprentices disperse back into the world, returning to home communities and waiting family or charting out new paths. That time will come. But not yet.
"Zenith" is the word that comes to mind. I am still riding on an abundance of greens, corn, carrots, onions, and more. I am still here, a sole Filipina on this one piece of land, feeling my feet plant into the soil and uprooting many more questions and emotions than I can act on, and so simply hold.
Seasons are turning. I claim a moment of stillness, knowing that soon there will be an inevitable change with the start of autumn. From this vantage point, I will share a snapshot of the past months in pictures:
This was the first picture I sent home to the parents.
Readying the soil.
Before this farm, I had never seen such an ocean of lettuce.
Tomatoes and peppers in the hoophouses
In the springtime we picked jewel-like currants.
On harvest mornings, we follow a game plan.