A Farmer and the Weather

As I lay snuggled in bed early this morning, I could hear the crack of thunder and the gentle raindrops hitting the windows. I said, "Thank you!" to the great and wonderful universe for sending it. It has been very hot and dry for the last three weeks or so. I said my little prayer silently because I wasn't planning on moving a muscle. A gentle rainstorm against the window is the perfect way to go back to sleep. And go back to sleep I did, until about fifteen minutes later. Thats when the gust front hit and sheets of rain began hitting the window.

I have always loved storms. It's amazing and awe inspiring to watch Mother Nature at work. So I got up and stood at the window. I stood there and enjoyed even though it was raining so hard I couldn't see the road. I walked around to the other windows and marveled at the amazingness of it all. The winds, I found out later, were 40-50 mph. I could tell at the time that all our row covers and shade cloth would not make it through the storm. I hoped our hoop house covers would not get ripped. But I watched without fear.

One of the best things about living on this farm and this close to the daily rhythm of the natural cycles is actually SEEING the cycles. Noticing how much daylight we are loosing everyday and adjusting. Noticing the full moons and the crescents. Noticing the caterpillars and seeing the chrysalis (chrysalii?) and then helping the trapped butterflies escape the hoop house. All these and more are happening all the time. Living in the city, as I was six months ago, I noticed these things when I took the time or when the moon was so huge and full that I was drawn outside to marvel at it. But I didn't really SEE.

It's one thing to intellectually know these things and many more are going on all the time. Its another for it to be surrounding you and part of you and for you to see and KNOW that you are part of it. Thats when you can feel your mind and heart expand and the Ah Hah moments start to pile up.

I wasn't afraid when the rain and wind began lashing the farm because that rain filled back up the pond we use for watering. The wind and the rain were a cleansing cycle that cleaned any aphids off the collards and gave the bee hive a chance to finally cool off. The row cover and shade cloth can be put back up and the plants will soon all stand up again. The sky is bluer and the clouds are whiter after a rain. Everything is clear and bright.

Yes, there is now lots of mud and we won't be able to follow our schedule of putting manure on the Hollis field this week. Yes the new flats of baby spinach we were going to transplant on monday are way to wet to do so. But we as humans can ALWAYS find the things that we call "Bad" about anything. Once you SEE the cycles around you though, you see that labeling things good or bad isn't the way it IS. This soaked ground will make it really easy to pull weeds and thin beets and arugula. This soaking will help all those fall seed germinate so our fall garden can get cranking. Only being happy when we have a slow gentle rain for a couple hours, (through the night so your day isn't disrupted) isn't the way LIFE works. And that big LIFE, is the cycle where you and me and everything in this universe are all bound up together. Like hair without a head or a finger without a hand, you can't pull one element out of the whole and have a system that works. Isolated it is worthless. From the inner workings of every atom in our cells to the amazing balancing act, on a much grander scale, of the planets in our solar system; everything is part of a whole. We are a part of Mother Earth. We are not just living on her. We are part of her Whole.

So I still say "Thank you!" for the storm this morning. Thank you for the water. Thank you for the life that will grow from it. Thank you for the abundance that comes to my family from the life that grows on our farm. And thank you for the amazing vegetables that our Dear Readers get to add to their lives. Once again another really cool cycle.


Row cover blown off.