Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Lightning Fast Changes: Drafting a Plan B on the Open Road

Two weeks ago Nick and I were certain that we were headed to our employer's organic farm, Ulaa, for the month of July, to work on the farm and to help out in drafting long-term plans for recruiting volunteers. And after that, we were certain that in August we were headed west to Mendoza, to work with a foundation that was partnered with our employer, again to help out and to help draft some long-term plans.

But then we found out that our employers had to put a hold on their volunteer programs due to financial problems (damn Swine Flu!)! Which means, as coordinators of the volunteer programs, we're outta work, so to speak. So two weeks ago we learned that we had to really put the pedal to the metal and draft a plan B for the open road we're riding here in Argentina until December.

And you know what? We found a plan B: using WWOOF, we found a farm 80 km outside of Mendoza city that will take us in for the month of July for 30 pesos a week. The farm is called Madre Tierra and it is run by a family with two young children. It's a bit of a hippy commune you might say---no meat, and no alcohol allowed, so that we can all be in harmony and dedicated to our farm work! :-) The father teaches yoga daily at the farm, and the mother is a nutrionist. Farm work is done everyday Monday-Friday, Saturday is for chores, and Sunday is the day of rest. So it will be quite a challenge, but one we are really looking forward to! (This is my one chance to get flaca! Let's see if I can pull it off! :-) ) It's going to be cold and a bit snowy probably, so this will be quite an experience! But a good one, we really think...We fell in love with Barbara Kingsolver's Animal, Vegetable, Miracle earlier this year, and we're really excited for an opportunity to learn more about getting back to nature. And, hell, we may never have the chance again...

But all in all, I think this change was a good lesson to us. Though at first it seemed like an unlucky thing to be out of work, it actually turns out to be quite lucky--now we have an opportunity to do something kind of crazy and get some life skills (like farming) under our belt. PLUS, more importantly, it reminds us how lucky we are: we are so, so incredibly fortunate to be in a situation where we have earned decent money in the past couple of months and are living in a relatively inexpensive place. Therefore, we don't feel the pressure like so many people unfortunately are experiencing right now during the crisis...So it reminds us to keep things in perspective and be GRATEFUL!

So that's all. A week from today we'll head on out to Madre Tierra, and then in August, we'll head to another farm in Mendoza province, and we'll find our way like that, month-by-month, until we come home in December...


Laura said...


But no alcohol???? How are you going to survive? HUGE CHALLENGE!!!

The best of luck for the adventurous Americans

J. Smith said...

this is such a grandiose experience! my happiness for the both of you is overflowing like the devil's throat with water. be one with nature! ;) suerte y besos!