Making Farming Moves

I am inherently impulsive. When I want something, I throw myself into it wholeheartedly and sometimes without proper preparation. Not this time, folks!

Some months ago, I voiced my desire to start a farm. I made outlines, plans, strategies, and more. Interviewed folks, spoke with people who made big transitions in their lives, bugged the farmers in my family and more. And then realized that all this was still not enough preparation. I know how to garden, how to raise enough food to feed a small family on a very small plot of land in the right seasons according to charts found on Google. These skills are good, I’m not going to knock them, and I’ve honed them well. I’m proud to say I am confident that I could be successful in the urban gardening community. But, that’s not farming on the scale of my dreams.

Luckily, I have been blessed with an opportunity to apprentice, for lack of a better word, with my step-father Juan on his farm in the Dominican Republic (DR). We bonded well over the summer when I went down with my mother for her wedding, which pleased her to no end, and he is just as excited to teach me as I am to learn.

I will be honest, this sort of feels like one of those quirky Hallmark movies where the naive city girl thinks she knows what she’s doing and everything goes downhill from there before an extremely heteronormative romance sweeps her off her feet and somehow helps her “find herself.” It’s never fun to explain asexuality to a hugely conservative community who cannot seem to comprehend not feeling sexual attraction (somehow coming out as lesbian made more sense to folks even if it was an “abomination”), let alone my extreme lack of desire to procreate which really seems to confuse people. But the experience and the adventure it promises are too good to pass up, and I’m not going to let a little fear get in the way of my goals. It pushes Puerto Rico a little further from my grasp, and many are convinced that I may decide to stay in DR for good or give up on my farm craze. To all of them I say, “Challenge accepted!”

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