A day on the farm.
During the Spring and Summer, I enjoy walking into the fields right before the dawn. Experiencing the peacefulness, except for an occasional barking dog or the chirping of the birds, cool morning freshness and the sweet smell of the orchards and vineyards as the sunrise draws near. It’s like gardening but in a grand scale. I feel close to God and nature during this quiet time. Then suddenly the silence is broken by the simultaneous rattle of the diesel tractor engine and the sound of automobiles approaching in the distance as the workers arrive to begin their day. Within a few brief moments I realize that the business aspect of farming has begun and the thought of gardening becomes a fleeting thought.
It’s time to greet the workers. Spanish is the language in the field. As I greet the workers and attempt to engage them in morning pleasantries there are usually chuckles as I massacre the Spanish language with my poor display of Spanish language skills. We somehow manage to communicate though. As the morning progresses there is a sense of urgency. We all work quickly as the temperature rapidly rises, seemingly by the minute. I usually rush from farm to farm checking the fields.
We’re always on the lookout for bugs that may have moved into the fields while checking the ripening of the fruit, soil moisture, irrigation and any other field projects. With this information in hand I make plans for the following days, weeks and months ahead. These plans are refined in each successive day.
The workers have gone home. The fruit is on its way to be cooled and prepared for shipment. It’s time for me to head for the office, if I haven’t been there already. As time will allow, a lunch break, and after lunch there are meetings with Santiago and Karen to discuss the day’s progress and planning for tomorrow. It’s now around 6PM, dinner and family time.
If any equipment is down due to the day’s activities, it’s off to the shop for a couple of hours to make the needed repairs. It’s now 11pm and time to clean up and get to sleep in preparation to do it all over again tomorrow. To some, this might seem like long days and hard work with little pay. All of this is true. However, if you truly enjoy what you do in life there are never enough hours in a day.