Monday, February 23, 2009
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.