Pennsylvania is settling into winter. The trees (oh, so many trees on this side of the country) are reduced to collections of naked sticks and their once luxurious covering of leaves lays around them as detritus. Next year’s fertilizer.
We are feeling settled. Our trailer is going to be cold this winter, but it has become comfortable and ours, a semblance of home. For the most part, things have a place, most of the trailer is in working order. It feels Good Enough For Now.
As for the farm and my work, I love it. As always, there are wrinkles to be ironed, but I am happy. Profoundly and deeply content. I no longer feel the dichotomy between Work Life and just plain Life. Farming feels like work that is a part of me. Like a good relationship, I feel both comfortable and passionate (comfortable in more of a spiritual context than physical). In the past, work was just a place that I go to do a thing to get a paycheck, and it was always rife with cognitive dissonance for me. It was like putting on a stiff suit for 8 hours a day. I think vegetable farming, exclusively at least, is probably not ‘it’ for me, but I’m definitely getting a hell of a lot warmer.
And so, I dream and plot and think of ways to build exactly the sort of agricultural business I want to run. Leasing or owning? Just ruminants or a menagerie of livestock? Vegetable component or just a large garden for my self and my family? Family business or partnership? I drive Eric nuts talking out all the pros and cons and thinking about how this or that would work. All of my reading is about The Four-Season Harvest, or Management Intensive Grazing, or Raising Sheep the Modern Way, or Acres USA magazine.
What a lovely thing it is to be fulfilled in your work. Everyone should be so lucky.