This past Tuesday, November 8, we had our last harvest day of the 2005 season. A bittersweet day. Everyone was cheerful and our team's customary wry and irreverent humor was in good form. And yet there was a tinge of sadness, too. After all, we will not be doing this again in a while and when we resume some of us will not be around. But that's what happens every year. There is continuity even in this end of season dispersion.
Here we are harvesting mixed baby lettuce for our CSA shareholders. In the foreground, on the left we see Carrie being productive as always and to the right a smiling Andrea Humm is being her usual gracious self, but Dave Vernon, in the middle, is showing obvious signs of work-induced derangement (the size of the image may not show that clearly, so readers will have to trust me on that).
A view from the other side: Gail Taylor and Megan Caine with the baby lettuce. It took a comically long time to harvest this tiny lettuce. Why? Because when we seeded them we didn't expect that we would be cutting them that small--otherwise we would have them closer together for a quicker and more efficient harvest. Incidentally, cutting baby lettuce is not the only exciting experience lived by Gail and Megan. Gail recently returned from a visit to Europe. Right before Europe she had some interesting adventures in Guatemala. Megan, after studying Spanish in Ecuador, hitchhiked through several South American countries. Every once in a while during her travels the farm would receive Megan's fascinating emails. Her traveling companion was Farah Fosse, another friend of the farm who frequently volunteers here. Before we knew her, Megan also traveled to China and South East Asia.
Back to the baby lettuce. Here is a batch of it being rinsed to get it ready for the shareholders.
Dave, Andrea and Megan working on the lettuce at the wash station. Dave is new to the DC area. Shortly after his arrival this summer he found out about Clagett Farm and has been a consistent volunteer ever since. He has worked on farms in his native Wales, and lived in South Africa and Canada. As to Andrea, all season she was a Tuesday volunteer whose dedication went above and beyond the call of duty. Neither cold rain nor oppressive heat ever managed to dent her gracious and gentle humor.
During Tuesday's lunch break Kathleen Davis came by to say hello and goodbye to us--her former farm teammates. We were happy to see her! Next week she is flying to her home in Hawaii. We wish Kathleen the very best, but for selfish reasons hope to see her back. Many of you know Kathleen, especially if you were a Saturday shareholder or worksharer in 04 and 05. Few people know, however, how much the CSA benefited from Kathleen's friendly and unassuming but very capable presence.
So here we are in mid-November. There are still plenty of things to do at the farm. But the dynamics of the work are quite different and fewer hands are needed.