Novella Carpenter has captured me. I am having trouble leaving the book alone long enough to get my work done! I am busy dreaming up crazy ideas, nodding and crying with her, smiling at her triumphs, comparing them to my own. “Farm City; The Education of an Urban Farmer” is a great book.
It makes us think of an option we have long looked at. Would we enjoy an urban farm? The cons we always looked at were the finite amount of garden space, the limited farm animals, the close neighbors, the noise, pollution, city water, and limited wood burning. But this book brings to light the marvelous perks that appeal to us. My great friend, Ethan, who was my farm intern a few years ago, texted me something to the gist of, “Read Farm City! It will make you want to take over empty lots and garden.”
Yesterday, my truck wouldn’t start. It seems to be on strike. I lasted about four hours in my apartment then jumped on my bike and ran errands around town stopping in between to sit on random benches and soak up the sun, answer business calls, and eventually ended up at Purgatory Winery where I devoured a few more chapters and a cool glass of Chardonnay.
Even out on our little homestead on the prairie surrounded by peace and quiet and astounding natural beauty, we would be tending the fire, finishing chores, then would suddenly drive forty-five minutes to town to pick up one thing from the store. Call it stir-crazy, attention deficit disorder, or cabin fever, Doug and I don’t stay put. We also love the freedom of jumping on a bus, a bike trail, or walking to wherever we need. Perhaps that comes from our long string of unreliable vehicles.
We love restaurants. For fifteen years we keep saying we are going to give them up! Expensive, unhealthy, waste of time…ooh look, a new Indian place. Our friends that never go out to eat, frequenting restaurants for special occasions only are amazing to us. But, we know we aren’t giving up eating out a few times a week and that is that.
Where neighbors are a con to city living, they can also be a pro. Good neighbors are family. Local music, karaoke, coffee shops, book stores, we want it all. So, a farm in the city makes quite a bit of sense to us.
My passion is farming, sharing farming, food security, children knowing where their food and medicine can come from. If I have a magnificent large country farm, who will see it? Only school groups and locals will be inspired. It is easy to grow on a large plot in the country, the real inspiration is given to those rounding the corner on a city street and coming across a veritable Eden in the middle of town.
Still a year away, but the ideas are swirling. Pick up “Farm City” by Novella Carpenter. See what crazy ideas you come up with!