This past summer a colleague, my nemesis actually, picked a fight with me. What was the fight about? No idea. Though I’m certain it was something petty and meaningless. Regardless, it was this fight that caused me to take a close look at my career choice at the time. I was sitting behind a desk every day. Answering phone calls and emails. Putting up with corporate-boy-wonder bull shit. I couldn’t be further from my dream as a headstrong teenager of skipping the undergraduate experience in favor of moving to New Zealand to become an outdoor educator. Not to be ungrateful for the steady job I had, but what the heck was I doing?!
Later that summer, this is aught nine we’re talking about, I started to nurture interests in building and helping things grow. Now, I’m not much of a green thumb (actually, I’ve killed every plant I’ve owned. Including a cactus… wow, embarrassing), so the animal kingdom was going to have to fulfill the “helping things grow” desire. It was around the time that this desire was planted that I was introduced to Jonas and Sam, now good friends. Jonas was in the preparatory stages of building his house and Sam, I found out, owns goats. Is that fate or what?! (I don’t really believe in that kind of crap, but WHOA, kind of a huge coincidence there). Somehow I charmed Jonas and Sam into letting me help them out with their hobbies. I spent a few hours with each of them, cutting boards with Jonas and learning how to tug teats with Sam. It was easier for me to fall in love with goats than a house.
Every day I spent on Sam’s farm was a day of regeneration. Thirty minutes from city sounds and my inbox, I felt like I was discovering how to breath deeply. It sounds like I’m romanticizing the experience, but truthfully I loved every part of being on a farm – the chores, animals, smells, quiet, land, and sky. Farming… I could get used to this.