We planted in the hoop houses today. Actually, we planted in the second one. The first is looking good.
It's a psychological game. . . planting today filled me with a lot of hope and excitement for the pending harvest that is going to happen in the. . . . winter?!?! Wait a minute. You don't harvest in the winter - you hibernate. We planted today, so summer must be right around the corner, no?!?! It's all very counter intuitive.
A fox came out in between our planting and construction (yes, there are still other projects that need doing), and what not. It was standing at the edge of our leaf pile over in the compost area. My first thoughts were to "eliminate the threat". There are a lot of chickens around that would make for a tasty fox meal, and after a summer of loosing thirty plus chickens from the Phunnypharm (my other farm), I have developed a natural defensive mechanism. Fortunately Dana and Chris were there to enjoy watching this marvel of nature with me. Our conversation and awe saved that wily ol' dog today.
We opted to follow this "monster" for a while (it is by far the largest fox that ever I have beheld in the natural world). It didn't seem bothered by us gawkers at all. It sunned on a boulder for a bit, preening itself a little, then it grabbed a snack from the compost pile and wandered a few yards into the woods to gobble it up. It was old - older than any red fox I have ever seen. It's body was sleek and brilliant red. It's tail didn't have quite the body that you would find in a younger specimen and it's face was gray - astonishingly gray - marking years and wisdom.
As we watched, it eventually made it's way back toward campus - in no particular hurry, with no care in the world. It's well fed. The conversation that followed our chance encounter made me happy that we let it go about it's business. We don't want Pearson's town to be "just another farm". We want to look at the past, and wonder at the future, the whole while creating for a new harmony between agriculture and nature. Chris inspired me today to think of the future of farming as the perfect merger of hunter/gatherer and farmer societies. Perhaps we can develop a Hunter/Farmerer (yes the stutter was intentional) system. . . sustainably.