June 19, 2005
Fruits of Summer
I picked strawberries at 8:00 a.m. at a commercial berry-picking farm this perfect summer Sunday morning with John, Anita, Ramona, Kristen, Mary, and Laurel. The seven of us had six five-quart ice cream buckets and one smaller container. After a short ride to the field on the back of a hay wagon, we picked berries in the lush rows designated by the field hands for our group. We filled our buckets filled quickly with only the most perfectly ripe berries leaving all others in the field. For a bit less than $30 the harvest was ours.
What is it we will do with our treasured fruits of summer?
Sunday is a day when no meals are organized by a cooking team or the instructors. A general patterrn is to scrounge for food throughout the day as one feels hungry; however, occassionally, someone spontaneously prepares a breakfast or dinner. When this happens, it sometimes seems as if food has appeared by magic. Today, later sleepers rose, found their way into the kitchen, and discovered a five-quart pail and a smaller container of perfectly ripe strawberries next to the half empty bagel bags, and a pan of hard-boiled eggs. I noticed a few students who had not accompanied the berry pickers making taste tests. Within minutes, a group of students were sitting on the patio enjoying a breakfast of large bowls of vanilla ice cream topped with fresh strawberries. A feast of summer. --Lynn
Posted by engl8813 at June 19, 2005 12:01 PM
On Strawberries and Philosophy Camp
I am fortunate that I have Mondays off during the summer. So I had one day in between returning from Philosophy Camp and going back to the office. Don't get me wrong, I love my office and the people I work with, but I miss the prairie, and all the people at Philosophy Camp, and all of the animals at the farm, especially the brown horse, Star.
Both Ramona and I are missing being there...on Day 2 we figured out that we could definitely see being there for six weeks.
Upon my return to Minneapolis I made a strawberry smoothie with the fresh strawberries we gathered on our outing. The berries are so perfect and beautiful and as Lynn mentioned we filled our pails in no time at all. As we headed back to weigh our berries, I reflected on what might be the difference between the romantic notion of picking berries for ourselves as "tourists" or "visitors to the country" and if circumstances were different and this was our livelihood, and we were stooped over picking berries for the whole season for hours and hours each day. Migrant workers do it. Would I view the experience and eating berries differently? I know that if given a choice on any given day to be inside an office or sitting outside riding on a flatbed truck drawn by a tractor with the wind blowing through my hair, and the hot sun beating down on me, strawberries to pop into my mouth any time I wanted, I would choose the latter, however, if there was more at stake I would probably choose the former. I ask myself "Why?" and must face and reflect on so many ideologic assumptions and choices we make to live in modern society...and reflect further on those things in my current life that are sustainable or unsustainable. What changes are necessary? How do they help or hinder? Could I really become a vegan? Would I miss eating meat and cheese? I really need to make more books, that is certain...and I still have never made a kite.
On other topics:
I would like to see some pictures of Star the Horse added to the other pictures...a nice close up and maybe one of Prince, too.
Thanks to all the instructors and students for such warm hospitality during my visit to Philosophy Camp.
Warmest regards for a beautiful day.