Meet Clementine. She has nothing to do with this post, although she does reside on one of the farms I toil away on.
I’m two months into a North Carolina summer. Here’s a taste of a typical day for me dealing with the subtropical heat.
6 a.m.: <Electronic death shriek! Death shriek! Death shriek!> Hit snooze
6:05 a.m.: Snooze
6:10: Why am I doing this?
6:15: Frankenstein-in-a-rush walk toward coffee maker <cue beep sound from television show “24”>
6:25: Sing Black Eyed Peas’ “Let’s Get it Started” and dance poorly to irritate/entertain Jonathan. Jonathan: “Don’t you need to be getting ready?”
6:30: Talk to coffee to entertain Jonathan. “You are my only friend.” Tell Jonathan I think I’m gonna die from tiredness. Jonathan: “You won’t die. Aren’t you supposed to be there by 7? You’re gonna be late.”
7:05: Arrive and pretend to be fully functioning cognitively while harvesting, washing and bundling onions and chard.
9 a.m.: Shovel compost onto rows to prepare for brussells sprouts. I’m definitely getting a lot stronger.
10 a.m. Harvest tomatoes, chat with farmers. Hey this isn’t too bad. And I’m waking up.
10:30 a.m. Pick blueberries. Oh hello, mystery bug. You’re beautiful. Hopefully you’re a beneficial insect. You look somewhat like an asparagus beetle, though. Hey, cute little toad. Hop along that way, before you get stepped on. Man, all those suckers in their cubicles! This is the best job ever.
11:30 a.m. Pull up irrigation drip tape. This humidity sucks. We need to move to the mountains.
Noon: Lunch. Sweet, sweet air conditioning!
12:30 p.m. Weed, then plant flower seedlings. Sunblock and sweat dripping down my face. Why do I even bother putting this stuff on? God, I wish I worked in a cubicle.
12:45 p.m. “Mystery bug – get the *#@% off me!” <Flick>
1:30 p.m. Contain relief when farmer says we’re switching to indoor/shady work. Spend the rest of the washing and sorting tomatoes, trimming tops off onions, pulling edamame pods off plants and planting broccoli seeds.
4 p.m. Leave with a bucket full of free tomatoes and a strong sense of accomplishment. This is the best job ever!
4 to 7 p.m: Be utterly useless.