Sunday, July 15, 2007

Bubbling Potato Abundance, Part 2

So last night the potatoes tasted wonderful and the beans were fantastic. Poodledoc, Jr and I had a feast. During supper, I remembered and tried to hold in the Light the people in this world who do not have this abundance. On the farm, we give extra to the food bank, which is great. But it seems like a drop in the bucket. I struggle with this and feel a sadness for the people who don't have enough to eat. I guess a small comfort is to realize that I am, along with others, making my own food and not buying as much pre-packaged stuff. And I've learned more about taking care of the land, the soil and that is so prescious.

Apprently, that part of Wisconsin grows a fair bit of tobacco. It puts much-needed cash into the hands of farmers living on the margin. Yesterday, we were sorting part of our HUGE garlic crop in the old tobacco drying shed. It's hard to settle with the fact that significant amounts of tobacco are grown on the surrounding land. A crop that makes people sick, rather than fresh produce that makes people healthy. John, one of the owners of the farm shared his dream of filling the tobacco dryinng sheds with garlic, replacing the tobacco. I've carried that dream in my mind since then. I like the image of reclaiming something good.

I also like the image of the United States converting it's army into an agricultural army, taking the money wasted on weapons and using it instead to help people grow their own food. Many people will scoff at this idea. Does that mean they've given up at some level? I don't think it means they don't care, necessarily. We do the best with what we're given in life. Feeling guilty doesn't get a person anywhere. It doesn't help things to grow. Being mindful of the inequalities in the world and doing at least one small piece to change that is something that matters.


Suzy said...

For those who scoff, I wonder where they think their food comes from, will come from ... oh yeah, the grocery store. Duh.

The one good thing I've heard said about growing tobacco is that, because it is so labor intensive and much of the work cannot be mechanized, it keeps farms in families. Does John have any wisdom about that?

I'm looking forward to reading Barbara Kingsolver's book about food.

Potato Prints said...

Hi Poodle,
I'm just catching up on the blogs that I like to read. I'm experimenting with leaving the internet outside the home. I end up hauling my aging laptop to a cafe and typing there.

Well I really liked these two posts about potatoes, partly because they invoke my name, but also because of the simple joy they describe.

It reminds me of Bo Lozoff's statement. "You and I live in an age when the ordinary seems extraordinary: to take time to watch the sun rise, eat breakfast or dinner with all the members of our family together."

I'm happy for you and Poodle Jr.

Suzy said...

The potatoes were delicious. And we have enough for at least one more meal. There is something magical about growing potatoes. You cut a few potatoes into pieces, put the eyes into the ground and -- voila -- potato abundance!

I liked the image of you laying eggs, by the way.

poodledoc said...

Potato, thanks for letting me invoke your name without asking! There is something so joyful, so satisfying, so.............magical about it. And being out on that farm pulls so much together for me. It really soothes me. Then I come back to the city and try to hang on to that. Eating the taters helps!

Suzy: I enjoyed laying eggs. Always wished I could. Remember when Harry had that giant egg in HP 4.....wasn't that cool? But seriously, I'm glad you liked the taters. There are more if you'd like. Just let me know. Tomorrow I'm taking a bunch to my labmates.....