Tuesday, March 9, 2010

We had an early morning, waking up at 7:00 to start morning activity at 7:30. During work block this morning we met Mil and his wife, Leah, the farmers at Tierra Miguel, and they gave us a tour. We saw and learned about the different crops and Mil's personal ideals about farming that differ from other farmers. His major ideals were based upon natural practices, such as using compost and cover crops to naturally nourish and revive the soil, as opposed the chemicals and pesticides used by other farmers. Mil is trying to find even more natural methods, rather than turning over the soil, called "no till" farming and recently got a grant to start this. During the second work block half of our group built a Mongolian yurt, while the other half weeded the strawberry plants. We've been enjoying all vegetarian home-cooked meals and dinner tonight (which was completely vegan, and almost entirely gluten-free) was cooked by a few members in our group. It was in Klil's words, "Delish".

Here are a few photos of our dinner tonight: Tempeh, amazing vegan bread with bananas and nuts, rice, broccoli, and peanut sauce.

After dinner, we had a group discussion led by Eytan and Jo about the story of creation and how it relates to sustainability. While I have both heard and read the creation story before, I really enjoyed reading the story again through a different lens. As usual with the Torah, there were many questions that went unanswered during the discussion. Some of the questions raised were: who is the narrator? what does God mean when he says that "it was good"? While these questions couldn't be answered, the fact that they were brought up stimulated a lot of critical thinking and discussion on the topic. It was a great way to end the day.
Love always and forever,
Ben Wasserman

During weeding the strawberry rows today we learned from Ole, a worker on the farm, about the proper methods of picking the weeds. He and Mill also taught us about the Stinging Nettle plant/weed that can cause hives, but also has medicinal purposes in healing arthritis. While it was a bit difficult at first, especially avoiding the Nettle, we soon got the hang of it and weeded about 3-4 rows of strawberries. The sun peeked out today, but we're hoping for more tomorrow!
Peace, love, and farming 'til I die,
Stephanie Cohen

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