Classes had finished for the day and I had an hour or so before my chores began. I ran back to my cabin with a friend, eager to break in my overalls. I rifled through my stack of folded t-shirts, hoping to find one to wear underneath. I settled on one and threw on a pair of boots as well. Then, we hurriedly gathered at the farm. At this time, the sun lingered on into the evening, bringing its warmth along with it. Though that was only a few weeks ago, the environment has changed since: the temperature has dropped, the skies are cloudier, and the threat of snow looms overhead.
Earlier in the semester, I raised my hand to harvest carrots along with a few other students and faculty members who participated in Work Program as well. Coincidentally, the other students in my group sported overalls, too, just in different colors. Great for pictures later! We were each given a pitchfork and plastic crate to store our collections. I was astonished by the amount of carrots we were supposed to harvest in the two hours that afternoon. But, the seven of us got to work quickly. I dug my pitchfork into the earth and the carrots loosed. Bunch after bunch, my crate began to fill up. My hands became decorated with soil as I ripped the vegetables up. Sweat beaded along the perimeter of my face as the sun touched my face.
By the end of the two hours, we managed to gather close to two hundred pounds of carrots. The best part was that these carrots that we harvested towards the beginning are being used to feed the Chewonki community for meals all of the time. And I had a hand in doing so! This was my first experience at the farm at Chewonki, and I can’t wait to return again for my morning farm chores next week!
Corrie Waters, Buckingham Browne & Nichols School, Cambridge, MA