The Farming Life

We have talked a lot about our fishing trips and afternoon excursions, but it seems like our day to day activities tend to brush over the actual farming. We are working through the bak choy and spinach (bayum – BUY-Yum)and we are at the end of broccoli and green beans (bunches – Boon – cheese) . The men are becoming well versed in manure piles and hacking through bamboo to create an outer boundary for the farm. I can now make manure tea and make homemade dry fertilizer as well.

For the last couple days we were able to work in the packaging part. We were able to see our vegetables and fruits in a grocery store!!!
We alternate between harvest, fertilizing, and planting, so we have also learned how to start seedlings, plant them, and which plants need to be sprouted first before planting.


In other news we have four (maybe five) new baby goats on the farm. We even had healthy twins – the nationals think that we somehow brought luck. Just yesterday though they had to kill one of them because it was sick. One of the translators decided to carry the head around….
We found a Rhinosaurous (sic) beetle on our laundry, so after showing it to ourfield mentor who got bit by it we put it in the guys bathroom. We figured since it didn’t kill him it wouldn’t kill them. We did hear the yelp about an hour later when our Korean friend found it. Apparently those things fly…
We are all building muscle with laundry which is laid or hung on every available ledge whe the sun is out and rapidly gathered in when the rain starts. We even have a close line rigged in the meeting room (Oula – OWL-a) above our rooms, so they will dry a little faster.
The women who live here are amazing. Our field mentor is encouraging me to interview some of them and write a few life profiles to bring back with me and show others.

We walk miles a day, eat four times, are always starving with in a hour, get up at five, go to bed at nine, and are having an insanely good time. There is always something new to do, look forward to, or try.
I hiked one side of the volcano the other day, and realized that a month ago there was no way I could have hiked three miles up hill at mid day in the tropics, so I am getting stronger. The view was amazing.
It is the end of rainy season, but it still rains so hard that we have to be driven from one place on the farm to the other. I think fifteen minutes of rain here would constitute a year of precipitation back home.
There is so much more about farm life I could tell you, but I guess I’ll have to save it. Remember us this next weekend. We will be in the big city for our one third break and to meet another exchange group who will be coming to visit the farm for a couple days. We also are meeting with a university student from a previous fishing trip and some of his friends to help them with their English. It will only be the five from the states because the other five are visiting family for a few days.

We might get to have a batik dress made for the three of us girls this next week. We are super excited to possibly look pretty for a little bit.
Also there is a cold going around the team and one of the girls is still hacking and keeping the rest of us up at night… One Last note – Look up Rambutan. It is the best fruit in the world. Rambut is hair in bahasa. I have had coconut, papaya, pineapple, mango, sirsap, and good bananas straight off the tree, but rambutan is the best. Apparently the national favorite fruit is coming off the tree soon, durian, and some people can’t stomach it, but if you can keep it down three times you’re well on your way to liking it. (I was barely able to eat it.)



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