Random thoughts for 2023
There are moments in your life when you wonder if having an internet presence is helpful to the life of your business. On the one hand, people stumble across you, place paying orders for large events and fill you with happines for providing a welcoming service. On the other hand people know where to find you, can self cater without paying for large events and temporarily make you feel quite ill and not at all welcoming. Our predators with 2 legs are out early this year. Makes you wonder why you get out of bed in the morning.
Small livestock farming is challenging. Somedays it is more difficult to find the joy than others, but last year we were inspired hosting a training course on high density grazing methods with Jaimie Elizondo from Mexico/United States. We learnt, we ate, we met new people. it was exhausting and fun.
I have been reminded this week of my age. It is just not wise to stop moving for too long, even if that is what your brain or body would like you to do. Running your own business does not make allowances for being out of action. I listen to The Joe Rogan Podcast and he regularly talks about keeping fit and building it into your routine, but making it fun and easy so that you actually do it. True words. I have a friend who has a Fitbit watch to tell her to get up and move. I also have a Fitbit watch it always needs charging.
There is a fly in the room. The first of the year, definitely not the last. It must be warmer. Tomorrow the sun is at 30 degrees in the sky so if you live near me it is time to get your kit off and run naked in the garden to absorb some vitamin D. I learnt this week that kiwi fruits have vitamin K, are helpful with the battle against osteoperosis and that the traditional green ones have more nutrient value than the new yellow varieties. Obviouly all as part of a balanced diet and fitness routine, cos if you only eat kiwi fruits and sit on your butt you will not be very well.
Our family is growing up. Our youngest will soon be off to stretch her wings, discover herself and find out that NO, the food that you buy in the supermarket when you are an impoverished student is not all delicious like here. Our 2 eldest have come home having discovered that for themselves.
It is difficult being a farmers child. Whilst you are young and living it, the long days, the physical work and overly busy home life seems like a trap. It is a pity that farming is not talked about in general eduction, other than in an historical context. Or even in general conversation by non farming people who might talk about the economy or politics, or more likely celebrities and what Reel they saw on Instagram yesterday, but will rarely contemplate the affect on their stomachs of a changing farming industry.
Farming is not shown to be the centre of of a community, innovative, international, socially and intellectually challenging. Knowledge is being lost at an alarming rate as more family run farms close every year, being gobbled up by corporate giants with little or no awareness of the local environment. The intimacy and empathy buried in the brains of the people that have lived somewhere for generations for the soil, the animals, the plants, the aspect, the air movement cannot be found in a book or a set of standard instructions delivered by a company to its manager. Be aware of progress and its steady march towards I want to say oblivion, but that might be too depressing and melodramatic for a Tuesday morning in Febuary, so I will say standardisation.
If anyone is remotely interested in statistics in farming here is a link in english to french and european information, they are in an attractive readable format;
Farming a profession that will keep you alive, unless of course everything gets nicked..... which doesn't leave anyone with much hope at all. I will try and find some jolly photos now to give you some joy.
See you at the markets, or Patrick will
I am farming sheep and goats on the Dordogne/Gironde border with my husband and our 3 children. We have an on farm butchery and sell our meat direct to the public via the markets and delivery points in our local area