To What Do We Devote Ourselves?
Dahr Jamail provokes this question, when pondering the crisis of climate that is upon our planet. This crisis is forcing our civilization to articulate and claim its essential values.
This begged the same for our farm. To what do we devote ourselves? What are our essential values? The short answer is we are devoted to: Health, Taste, and Connection. Health refers to that of soil, plants, animals, ecosystem, and people (our selves, partners, and customers.) Taste refers to food, of course, as food that doesn't taste good doesn't persist. And connection is about intimacy -- knowing the story behind how food is produced and how it is consumed. Our customers partake in this devotion with us, for they are essential partners in our journey of purpose.
How we act portrays our devotion. What we do on a daily basis reveals where we stand in life, explaining our values. So, what have we done over the past several weeks?
First, children and grandchildren arrived, filling our new house with great energy and good food. They were greeted by Susan's famous open-faced Italian sandwhiches of: salami, capricola, mortadella, prosciutto, provolone cheese, aioli, tomato, red onion, and vinagrette, placed under the broiler just before eating. These are the best sandwhiches ever. It is impossible to eat only one of these bursting bundles of flavor.
We also enjoyed a standing rib roast of pork, with kale, mashed potatoes, baked apples, and salad.
A large brunch for ten of pancakes, sirloin steak, scrambled eggs, sausage, and Ontario maple syrup further brought spoils of familiar soil to the table.
One of the most special activities of this time of year is finding and savoring morel mushrooms. They are so delicate and exquisite in flavor, when panfried in butter and wine. This was a good year for them. These were presented to us by the keen eyes, generous hands, and careful footsteps of Clark and Mike.
If you hail from the Commonwealth of Kentucky, as does Susan, the most important day of the year is Derby Day -- the first Saturday in May. And the menu hardly varies from year to year: red roses are at the center of all, supported by home-fried chicken, whipped sweet potatoes, green beans, biscuits, and killer Derby Pie. That bottle of bourbon in the background is allegedly to enhance the crust of the pie, but it is suspected some made its way into the lemonade we sipped as horses ran in the rain.
Ewes have begun lambing, and most, but not all, are paragons of devotion. One ewe gave birth to twins, one of which died after a day or so. The mother ewe stood beside that still body for two days, hardly moving a muscle. Finally, she relented, and began to graze in order to care for the other twin, letting vultures descend to recycle the remains. It is clear to what that ewe was devoted.
Beaver in our wetlands continue to reign supreme, raising dams by a foot or more and backing water up into many acres of newly planted trees. This water is also invading pastures, creating problems for agricultural production. We have thus garnered permission from the local game warden to trap the beaver in the off-season, given they have become a nuisance to operations. We have located the equipment to remove the extensive network of dams and are hoping to secure the trapper by end of the weekend. We are devoted to our wetlands, which have been devoted to us.
Two weeks ago we explored the concept of glory and this week that of devotion. These are potent terms which enrich those of us who work here more than money and reside at the center of our purpose. We strive to deliver to you literal tastes of such in our food.
This Sunday the 12th marks the last of the indoor market at Clark Montessori, which Bob and I will be attending. The following Sunday, the 19th, we resume operations at Hyde Park Square. The following Wednesday the 15th, we open at Blue Ash (4 - 7 PM), and on the 25th, participate in the inaugural market at German Village, in Columbus. Milford opens on June 1. The starting gates are about to open for a busy summer!
Drausin & Susan