"United we bargain, divided we beg."

Monday, February 23, 2009

Got Dirt?

Homero spent about 4 hours yesterday rototilling. I don't think he knew how grueling it was going to be. He thought it was going to be like driving a tractor, but instead it was like wrestling with a noisy stinky 300 pound beast with nine inch steel claws. That's probably why we have a patch of reasonable proportions (about 30 x 30) instead of the ridiculously large area he told me he was going to put in.  

It's not done, either, by any means. In four hours, he was able to till it in one direction; next he has to go back and till crosswise. There was an incredible amount of crap in the ground: sheet metal, bent pipe, broken cement blocks, lots and lots of rotted wood. The people who lived here before us, as I think I have mentioned, didn't haul away all the remains of their demolished barn. A fair amount of it got spread around and buried, or semi-buried. This is probably some of it.

As soon as my back recovers a little bit (I was digging out the blocks of cement and the metal and removing them from the path of the rototiller, and also turning compost), I will put back the two 4 x 8 beds and rake out the dirt inside them and get it ready for planting. Of course, there's a couple of frosts in the future still, but I think I can plant snow peas, radishes, and spinach just about any time now. The rest of the area I'll cover with black plastic and take my time preparing little by little. I told Homero that I was willing to take on responsibility for the entire vegetable garden after he tilled it. The garden is part of a larger responsibility which is mine: food security. 

We had a conversation and I told him I was feeling frustrated because it felt like I was depending an awful lot on him to get us towards our goals of independence. I'm not going to build a windmill. I can't build the biodiesel processor. I can't hook up a generator. I can't build a chicken coop or build a fence. I'm not even going to slaughter a hog. Chicken, maybe. I felt like I wasn't doing my part, even though rationally, that's a pretty silly feeling. I've been the impetus for this entire operation. I take care of the animals, mostly. I run the household, mostly. I'm responsible for childcare and child education, mostly. I cook and shop and budget and pay bills. I milk goats and make cheese and preserve the harvest. 

But rational or not, I felt like it wasn't enough. So now I have a new goal. I'm going to make sure that at the end of this growing season, we have six months of food in this house, and a damn good portion of it is going to be from this patch of dirt right here. 


TheMartianChick said...

It's kind of funny... In my house, I am doing most of the projects because it is too cold to start the ones that require construction. TheMartianMan is feeling sort of left out.I just reassure him that he is awfully good at carrying and storing all of the wood we've been getting at the Habitat For Humanity Re-Store. Once Spring breaks, he won't get any rest!

ChristyACB said...

Well, perhaps just take a moment and appreciate him really profusely. ;)

Being the only grown up means it is all me here and I'd be super grateful for a Homero for a while. Be happy you have such support.

By the way, you do plenty, girl!

Aimee said...

Christy, thanks for the perspective there. You are right, I am very grateful that I have such a handy man around to do the heavy lifting and the complicated mechanical stuff. If you were closer, you could borrow him for a little while!

Good luck with all you've got going on right now, I know you've been hauling a lot of dirt!

spelled with a K said...

pretty sickening what you find in the ground sometimes. And FWIW I'm sure he will appreciate the work you put in.