Sunday, December 29, 2013

Can a city girl become a farm mouse?

Growing up I used to pride myself in being able to do so many household chores. Yes even farming.
Back then it was non voluntary.
My parents would find ways of coercing us to go to the shamba (farm) and more often than not I would do it so diligently so that I could get the often promised carrots.
Me and my siblings would dig, uproot weeds, plant crops and even harvest at different times of the month.
But one can pull the this tactics just for a few times and as we grew up and went to school in far of places, there was need for other farming alternatives like hiring help.
Time flew and soon I found myself working in the capital. Recently when I found myself going to my rural home for holiday, I kept wondering whether I would remember how to hold a hoe or how to till the land.
Being in the city did not make me a total blond. I still remember how a hoe looks like and the way to the Shamba is etched at the back of my memory. But there is a certain angle within in which the hoe hits the ground to make the greatest impact.
A certain way to arc your back while digging to ensure that you do not have a backache or get tired only after a short while.  While these questions bogged my mind, I began remembering the pleasant memories associated with farming while growing up.
The songs we would sing as we went to pick some kales, the games of hide and seek we would play, how we would eat the mangoes from the tree as self rewards for our hard work and even make a fire to boil or roast some maize when we were tired of chasing of the monkeys from eating the produce during harvesting season.
It created a nostalgic feeling that I want back. Not exactly being young but the sense of adventure that farming created.
In my work I have had the opportunity to share time with young farmers people like me who have gone back to till the land and living well of it.
Urban farmers and rural farmers, the old and young alike all have one thing in common the passion for farming and doing what they love.
Maybe it is this association that has rubbed off in me and sparked a new fire. Ensuring that I can do something about food security is my new goal. The journey won’t be easy but this city girl is getting transformed into the farm mouse!

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