|Our parting gifts to John, Ryan, Emma and Willie.|
|Ryan's Guinea hog (pork) sausage and signage.|
Tonight we are hosting a goodbye potluck for our farm crew. Willie leaves tomorrow, Emma and John and Ryan all move on in the next week.
Much of what Prentice and I do here--
|One of Willie's goats, before he sold them.|
We take the apprenticeship model pretty seriously.
We both began our farming careers as apprentices and we met on an oh-so-romantic sea side in farm downeast Maine. We work to create a healthy working, learning and living environment here at Village Farm. I say working AND learning AND living because we do all three in community. And the word, "healthy," of course, is relative. What I mean by healthy is honest, communicative, challenging, easy-going, flexible and accountable. The apprenticeship model, as we see it is a way for us to share our home, land, food and expertise with aspiring farmers.
|Emma and John's garden.|
|Emma and Polly working on the earthen oven.|
It is a model of working and learning that is not so much about master-apprentice but much more about immersion, working with, day in and day out and literally and figuratively "breathing in" the new information.
And we certainly learn, too. We never cease to be inspired and amazed by the people who sign on to this farm and family business as apprentices.
The pictures with this post give you only the tiniest look into some of the projects that Emma, John, Willie and Ryan took on independently this year.
With all best wishes for your futures, we are gratefully yours,
Polly and Prentice, Joseph, Ben and Abe