Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Green Acres is the place to be

Farm life is noisy and smelly.

Roosters in particular, can be loud and unruly. Some areas prohibit chickens by zoning regulation.

"Be a good neighbor," said one of the chicken gurus at the chicken training on Sunday, so chicken ownership stays legal and accepted. In my town, chickens are considered pets. Still, pet owners have responsibilities.

One of the chicken coops on the tour smelled. I couldn't stay in there very long. It was a sunny, muddy, spring day, so most of the chickens were outside at the watering trough, left.

Most Westerners are disconnected from the production of food, which involves smell, sound, killing and dependence on the weather.

We're also disconnected from the rhythms of the earth. We protect ourselves from and complain about bad weather. I live in New England and love to ski, both cross-country and downhill. For optimum conditions and comfort, I watch the weather and respond to it.

This morning, I squeezed another day on my cross-country skiis before everything melts. I went out early before the sun melted the fresh snow. It was beautiful, pristine and quiet. I prefer going skiing outside of my back door instead of driving to the health club.

When we move away from the land and into cities, we're cut off from the rhythms of nature. Green Acres becomes a myth, a backwards, far-removed place with rustic noises, smells and barnyard animals. Small farms have been able to survive by becoming museums.

Maybe we need a TV show called Reality Farming?

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