"Have you seen my friends?"
Bibb. It’s here. It’s soft as ever a lettuce could be and as full of that good Bibb flavor as ever a head could hold. Delicate yet mature, tender yet spirited, gentle yet glowing, it is truly the lettuce dreams are made from. If you’ve never tried it, do so now for it’s in limited supply. Kind of like the salmon from Alaska.
And that book discussion? Ummm…make that Friday, August 5th at the Blackbird Café in Stanwood at 7 p.m., where, by the way, salads are filled with The Open Gate Farm goodness and crunch! And then the following Saturday at the Snow Goose Bookstore where you can purchase “Dear Friends”, our book of the 2009 newsletters.
Oh, and while your calendar is open, note that on Friday the 12th, we are planning our first “Get A Pizza The Farm”! A charming and friendly gourmet chef will bring his portable wood fired pizza oven and cater the event. You’ll get a huge tossed salad with our house dressing (olive oil based), a personal pizza, a powerful pasta, and a rhubarb crisp for dessert…all for $25. If you want wine to go with it, bring your own bottles and glasses…otherwise we’ll have that world famous “Adam’s Ale” (aka, fresh water) to wash down the provender. Reservations and deposits will be required. We’re going to limit this to 15 people this first time. Even though we just did a potluck with 120 folks.
Until then, satisfy those cravings with all this great food and goodies from our stand here at the farm!
||Cinnamon Rolls $3.50
|Green Leaf (Bergam’s)
||Butterscotch Bars! $1.00
|Red Leaf (Biscia Rosa)
|Romaine (Star &
||Wednesday – White Artisan
||Thursday – Oatmeal / Molasses
|Butterhead (4 Seasons)
||Friday – Challah $8
||Whole Wheat & Olive / Cheese Boats $2
||Gold Rush Daisy
|Basil Bunches $2.50
||Sage – purple and plain
||Thyme – gorgeous
|T-Shirts – with our logo!
||A wide selection for
|Coffee – Local & Good!
Scooter the white and fawn colored duck came drifting out from under the nursery tables the other day. She looked forlorn and sounded lonely. “Quack? Quack? Quack?” Her little voice floated around the farm, calling to the others to respond so she could find them. We watched from the deck as she drifted over the sea green lawn like a sailboat deserted with the sails still up…blown about aimlessly by the winds of chance. But call as she would, there was no answering “quack” from any of the others. Only the silence of lonliness.
Our ducks are never alone. Their buddy system is so strong they even have a lifeguard when they go swimming in their wading pool. But Scooter was alone on the lawn. So up hopped your farmer from his lunch and while strolling out to her spotted the others gathered down by their swimming pool. They were quietly sipping water and chatting among themselves about slugs and worms and such forth. Guiding Scooter down their way, your farmer watched as she finally passed by the rhubarb and the WWOOFer trailer and spotted her friends. Then she put it in to high gear and hustled over to them with happy quacks and a light step. It was odd that she had lost them.
The next day, it was Cheese’s turn to lose the group. Once again we heard a lonely “Quack? Quack? Quack?” as she stood on tiptoe and peered into the flower garden and poked along the base of the raspberry bushes looking for the gang. This time your farmer spotted the others quietly sitting in the shade under the trailer, not saying a word to their lonely friend. Again, a little walk behind guiding and she was back with the flock. She was happy, but the others seemed indifferent.
Then we figured out what was going on. The ducks were playing hide and seek. First Scooter, then Cheese was “it”. They buried their beaks in the mulch in a flowerbed until the others were hidden and then headed off in search. But by the time they got to the flock, the others had forgotten all about the game and were busy with other matters. Fortunately the ones who were “it” had a farmer who helped the seeker find the hidden and unity was restored.
For some reason it called to mind the old story of the Rabbi whose grandson came crying into his study. Climbing up into the old man’s lap, the lad sobbed out his story. It was his turn to hide and the others didn’t bother looking for him. They left him to wait and never told him they’d gone on to another game. The wise old grandpa observed quietly that “God knows just how you feel”.
We all do too. We know how both that little boy and God feel. We all have times when someone tells us to hide and then never bothers to come look for us, to invite us to a new game. It hurts. It doesn’t make sense. We thought we were wanted, we thought we were loved, but maybe not so. We see it in people who come to the stand, who talk about pouring their lives into a career or a community effort, or even a family and then discover it is not being understood or valued or supported as had been promised. We’ve probably done it to others too, not realizing the pain we are causing.
When that happens to us, there really seems to be only a couple things to do. We can fight against it and try to argue our way back into relationships, or we can flee from it and never talk to them again…cut them out of our lives. But when we do, the scars remain a long, long time and never really heal.
It might be there is a third way. It might be that a better path than “fight or flight” is to consider what love can do. Years ago Edwin Markham wrote a great poem about this option.
“He drew a circle that shut me out.
Heretic. Rebel. A thing to flout.
But Love and I had the wit to win.
We drew a circle that took him in.”
If we start looking at ways to surround with love those who reject us, it might make for a new start, a healing, and surprise everyone with joy. So let’s get creative. Let’s grab our chalk and on the sidewalks and roads of life start drawing some really big circles. Our circles might even overlap! And it may be that your own personal farmer might come and help guide you back to your flock and unity will be restored.
Jon and Elaine, the chalk holding farmers, Snickers the pencil chewing dog, Mystery the chalk watching cat, Ben and his flock of penciled hens, and the Parson Dudley Brown with his flock of well hidden ducks, all of whom live joyfully at
The Open Gate Farm
269 Russell Road
Camano Island, WA 98282
Open Wednesdays through Thursdays, 9 to 5 with healthy food for happy families!