Gobble, gobble

local-harvest-blog-photos-0172

Sarah and her rockin' son graciously pose with their prize turkey.

It’s 4:00p.m. Sunday afternoon and Brian from Farrar Out Farms is scouting our back alley to make sure the large refrigerated Ryder truck he’s rented for the turkey deliveries will actually fit without taking out any wires.  Luckily for all of us, turkeys included, the truck fits and the unloading begin.

We’ve arranged to stay open late so our turkey buyers can come to pick up the 80 turkeys we sold this year.  It easily could have been 100 had Farrar Out had them to sell.  I never thought I’d be so excited about fresh turkeys, especially given the fact that I was a vegetarian for 18 years, but there I was anxiously anticipating the arrival of our customers and the turkeys.

Brian and the two guys he brought with him, Mark, Pat, Anne, and I start the unloading.  Brian recounts that it had been a hard week.  Not only is it hard work to slaughter and process so many turkeys, but the cold weather the past week had made it that much harder.

As I listen I think about how much these turkeys are really worth and wonder if people realize all that goes into raising an animal for consumption.  I think about all the meals I’ve taken for granted.  I’m also thinking how grateful I am to all of our farmers and to the people who shop at our store and want to support the tough business of farming.  (Hey wait, it sounds like I’m giving Thanks? Well, how appropriate is that???)

A few minutes after we unload, the people start arriving.  I don’t know if they felt this way, but I felt a great sense of community.  It was fun being the deliverer of the turkey–the prize of the meal. It was fun watching people visit and watching them prepare for the meal to come.  It reminded me that lots of people really do want to be connected and do want to know where their food comes from.  And it reminded me again to contemplate all that happened so that I could eat– the seeds that were planted, the hands that harvested it, the little tiny things in the soil (microorganism? right?) that nourished it, the farmer who tended the animal, the animal who lived so that I could too, and in thinking about this I am grateful.

So Happy Happy Thanksgiving.

-Maddie Earnest

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