Packhouse Antics

May 22nd, 2019

Joy and I have a good routine going on our pack out days. We pick each item together, splitting the bands, which we wrap around the item and with an efficient swipe of the knife separate stalk from plant again. On and on we go until the item at hand has been collected. Each vegetable has its own little routine, but for the most part, that is how we spend our Tuesdays and half of Mondays. While we are picking, we chat about ideas, we discuss life, and laugh at funny statements. Time moves by quickly and before we know it, we have completed our harvesting and it’s time for us to move into our packhouse and take care of the next steps, cleaning and packing into individual boxes. Joy will put on some music and away we go. From almost day one, we have had a good work flow. Somehow the way we work just seems to work well. I have been doing this routine for over a decade now and have worked with lots of different people, but Joy takes the cake. I think a part of it is that we both just like the work. We are both intoxicated by the smells, like the dill and cilantro in this week’s box. We laugh a lot, tease each other, push each other to do the work faster, or help each other with tasks that are just slow in nature, like cleaning wild ramps. Sometimes we even get a visitor or two, which can add to the fun of the day. Yesterday my father Rich, stopped in for a half hour or so and shot the breeze with us. It had been a couple of days since we last chatted, so there was much to catch up on. It was a reflective conversation. We talked about the sad state of farming, but also the exciting state of our farm. We chose a different path. This veggie business is most certainly not corn and beans or dairy farming. It’s unique and it fits us. This style of farming creates a community around us, a group of people who we know and help feed. We talk about these high philosophical topics. In a way, we do our little part to make this world a better place. I have come to love these days. Yes they are exhausting, but it’s a job well done and a day well spent. 

~Farmer Rufus