so hello again, you lovely readers!
it's a thrill to be back writing and expressing my thoughts,
but it's even more of a thrill, i have to admit, to be back at the farm.
as i turned off of the 101 and drove into camarillo early this morning,
i was overcome with emotion.
the hills were covered in fog,
the migrant farmers were out harvesting strawberries,
and i was taking stock of the changes that had occurred in the landscape during my absence.
the plastic had been removed from some of the strawberry beds,
the artichokes had been tilled under off of Lewis and Las Posas,
and there were entire fields of celery that had been harvested,
leaving a canvas of soil strewn with discarded stalks and leaves.
The emotion that came, so unexpectedly, was joy
for the gift of living and working in a land where the landscape constantly changes,
where the fields are green and growing all year round,
where home is a place of unconditional love and peaceful communication,
where the term "boss" can be replaced with "friend,"
where our job is work, work that we all love.
the realization was unmistakeable:
i love this place
(in a way i have never loved anywhere else before).
i remember having a similar realization after living several months in bolivia.
it also came early in the morning after returning from a trip.
i was in a taxi, driving through the city of cochabamba
as folks were beginning their morning rituals.
boarding the bus,
stopping on the street to purchase maté de coca and salteñas,
greeting neighbors as they walked to work...
i looked around, and up at the rim of the canyon we were ascending,
and i knew that i was going to miss this place, these people.
my time there was neither picturesque nor easy,
but it became a part of me.
i continue walk to the rhythm of that city,
as i search for and remember its bright colors.
i grew to love it. i miss it in this moment.
but i was not transformed by it.
my parents' home made me.
my time in los angeles broke me.
bolivia gave me new eyes.
and i have been re-formed here, at the farm.
it is here and now that i am home.
so good to be back.