Well folks, it’s been awhile. Thank you for sticking with me. I realize I now have about two months of catching up to do, but instead, I think I’ll just make a long story short and catch you up with what is happening now!
As you probably realized, internet access in Italy was nearly non-existent. Italy, I think, enjoys being the way they are, and the way they have been, for hundreds of years. So while the lack of internet and phone service was at times frustrating, the equal lack of constant advertising, plastic, and over-packaged everything was quite enjoyable. They seem to truly value a job well done and with quality materials because they know it may be around a very long time! I had amazing experience, saw beautiful countryside, met wonderful people, swam in the sea, and the food, oh, the food. So good.
I ended the program at Spannocchia without any plans for the immediate, or honestly long term, future, except of course to keep farming. I thought I might stay in Europe but after three months I was feeling ready to head back to the states. I was also getting a little homesick for Broadturn Farm. I flew back into Boston and a few days later headed up to Maine. I went to see my friends at Broadturn, and asked, with the highest of hopes, if I could come back to their farm. They said yes but since they had already hired a full staff for the year (and a great crew at that!) I wouldn’t be able to get my adorable cabin back. Instead they suggested I check out a brand new farm just a few miles down the road, and so I went to meet that farmer and see if that would be a place I could dig in.
When I got to the farm no one was around, so I gave myself a mini self guided tour. I was skeptical of this new farm, and this new farmer, who I had heard had just bought the farm from the Scarborough Land Trust, and was from Pennsylavania, but I didn’t know much else. I was pleasantly greeted by a very old white with blue trim farmhouse, with newly transplanted calendula, nasturtium, zinnias, marigolds, bachelor’s buttons, and sunflowers. The eight small vegetable plots looked well organized and in good shape. Also, there was a tipi, which was curious, but seemed like a good mix to the farm. I left a note in the door was got ready to head back to Boston. On my way out of town I stopped by to visit some friends of mine and told them about this farmer I was looking for. They had already become good friends with him and told me I should go to the farmers market where he was that morning, and so my search continued.
And find him I did! And I’ve been here ever since!!
The farm is called Frith Farm and it’s just a few miles from Broadturn, closer to the ocean! Daniel, the farmer, bought the farm in November and it’s amazing how much he has accomplished in that time. There is one acre of gardens, eight plots thoughtfully planned out by vegetable type for crop rotation, which helps keep the soil healthy by not pulling the same nutrients out of the ground and therefore also growing healthier produce! Crop rotation also keeps bugs down by not giving them a stable habitat year after year.
There are six acres of pasture, and for now we have 75 laying hens, 75 Cornish Cross chickens, 50 Freedom Rangers (a new breed for us, they are suppose to better foragers than the Cornish Cross, which is bred primarily for growth), 6 pigs, and 6 lambs. And as of Friday, 14 baby turkeys!
It’s a 30 member CSA, with pick-ups on Tuesday and Friday. We also sell every Sunday at the Scarborough Farmers Market. Daniel was on the news recently talking about his new farm. It’s a nice piece and than you can see more of the farm and learn more about how he became a farmer!
I feel so lucky to be part of this wonderful farm and working with great people. I’m also so happy to be in the community I came to love last year and near the great friends and mentors I met at Broadturn Farm.