This summer, I spent six weeks working on organic farms in Italy through WWOOF, an organization that allows members to find work on farms around the world. I stayed on 4 different farms, and each provided me with a unique learning experience. I was joined on the first farm by Ian MacLellan, who took some of the pictures below. Some of the work was more strenuous than others, but all the farmstays introduced me to amazing mentors who were full of knowledge about farming. I highly recommend WWOOFing for anyone who wants hands on experience, to learn, and to be challenged. Check it out at: http://www.wwoof.org/
In Sassoleone, we picked cherries all day, and the youngest, Jora, feasted on them.
After a long day of baking and picking cherries the family all gets together to jar cherries before they start to go bad.
Giorgio was the owner of the first farm, and cultivates most of the fields himself with apricot trees, figs, and honey. He also has a collection of chickens, geese, and rabbit for his bar in town and while we were there he slaughtered 21 cocks and one hen. Here his wife and another friend clean and prepare the animals in his workshop. The smell reminded me of the grinding and burning of teeth at the dentist… Giorgio is essentially a father and grandfather to the family and constantly stops his own work to take care of the kids or guide in gardening technique.
Transplanting seedlings while chatting with one of the farmers, Clara.
A storm approaches.
The teepee in the forest, where I lived with the six other wwoofers on my last farm.