Eat a Peach

Layton Guenther, a member of the 2012 Apprenticeship class, wrote this reflection for a recent issue of Field Notes, thepeach newsletter of the UCSC Farm’s CSA project

“Do I dare disturb the universe?
Do I dare to eat a peach?” – T.S. Eliot

Both pertinent questions. I find myself asking several variations of the two throughout my days here at CASFS. One of the most egregiously delightful things about living with 45 some-odd collection of folks from the far-flung corners of the nation is that there are nearly always interesting, intellectually demanding and sometimes downright Dionysian pursuits that occur within the humble walls of our farm center.

Weekends at the UCSC Farm and Garden can feel like you’re either on the moon, or in paradise, or the afterglow of some eschatological evening affair, or all three. Who stayed up all night canning all of those nectarines from Masumoto Farms? What are all of these fresh bagels doing here? Where did that stuffed unicorn come from?

Now that we get the New York Times delivered to our collective doorstep, weekends in the farm center start to feel a little homier. This is perhaps significant for those of us from the Northeast, who in past lives have spent leisurely Sundays poring over the endless pages of somewhat pertinent news stories; and often effusively irrelevant chirpings of, say, wedding announcements, or the Sunday crossword.

Often, for me, weekends are a good time to catch up on two major pastimes for me: playing music and cooking. Allow me to let you in on a little secret: the Chalet in the Alan Chadwick Garden inspires nothing if not exquisite awe for the beauty there, so much so that one can hardly keep from singing, plucking, chopping, grilling one’s way to heaven. Pour one out for Alan Chadwick, he would be pleased.

In the Chadwick garden, one does indeed dare to eat a peach, or four. But disturb the universe? We pause. Leave that to the crepuscular critters: raccoons that will eat your roasted almonds straight out of your cubby and all but replace the twist tie when they’re done; rabbits that unbutton beds of baby lettuces for their own personal salad bars.

In case it didn’t make it onto your calendars this year, August 1st happens to be the Full Sturgeon Moon. To my knowledge, there are no sturgeon to be had in this corner of the Monterey Bay, so let’s rename it, shall we? Happy Full Belly Moon, everybody. Happy Full Belly Moon, Alan Chadwick. This one’s for you.


Posted in From the Farm & Garden | 37 Comments

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