We ventured outside of the city to an eco-village called Eco Truly for a few days of volunteering and relaxation. All of the housing at Eco Truly is built out of mud-bricks, and the buildings themselves are actually called trulys. We spent our morning doing yoga and meditating, and then volunteered for a few hours after breakfast, usually helping to prepare the day’s lunch.
Everyone that lived in the village permanently followed a specific Hinduism path, practicing Hare Krishna. We were able to go to their nightly temple service and experience an amazing energy from their practies. We came back to the city a little earlier than expected because we truly missed our home here in Miraflores at the Backpackers Family House hostel. If anyone is traveling to Lima, I highly suggest staying at Pedro’s quiet, clean and relaxing hostel.
I tried to stop by the farm as much as possible before I left, and took my sister to the last Eleven Forks dinner of the season. We made shortbread cookies with homemade strawberry-rhubarb jam; as well as, radish crostinis. For the radish crostinis I toasted sliced baguettes with the olive oil I produced in Italy, then spread a soft Swiss cheese over top, and top the bread with very thinly sliced radishes that have been tossed in olive oil, lemon juice, salt, pepper, and garlic. And finally, I garnish them with arugula and mizuna (and in the summer, I also add squash blossoms).
So many things are growing at the farm right now! Squash, cucumbers, and Kale were all transplanted a couple of weeks ago and the greens that were direct seeded are coming up strong. There’s some radishes and beets coming up too, and as always the garlic is getting even bigger! Today I direct seeded beets, radishes, arugula, and some other greens, while Ric roto-tilled and tended to the garlic, and Christie got some plants ready for the swap in the morning. I’m very excited to see what everyone brings to swap and sell tomorrow morning. Oh and we got some ducks!
After we finally settled into a new home upon returning from Italy, we felt the need to start supporting our local agriculture community in the Ocean City/Berlin, Maryland area. We originally looked into buying a share in a traditional CSA, but through one thing or another have now ended up in a more non-traditional CSA environment. CSA, or community supported agriculture, allows individuals or families to buy shares of a farms crop for the season. For example we would pay $300 in advance for a basket of produce received weekly straight from the farm during the season of May-October. Not only would this give us a discounted rate on produce, but would also give the local farmer financial support during a time of year when they are usually making the least amount of money. That aside, we decided to go the untraditional route, and have begun volunteering on a farm in exchange for produce, and whatever else comes along. The farm actually participates in the US chapter of Wwoof, but since we live only 15 minutes away, we are not fully wwoofing this time around. We help when we can, and take what we need. Our goals for the season are to learn to water bath can, pressure can, pickle, jam, etc… We also want to learn more about harvesting our own honey, and butchering some chickens. So far we have spent our days planting seeds, both directly in the ground and in seed trays; as well as, watering, building a trellis among other things, and learning a great deal about the process of a farm. The sprouts are beginning to come up and the garlic has been strong for months now. Tomorrow is our first community dinner of the season, along with a Kombucha seminar, and a very busy Sunday to follow.