Diana Loachamin: Rancho Durazno, Colorado

July 15, 2010

Opening the door and going to work, I had to commute 3 hours to work every day in Ecuador, I left home at 5:30 in the morning and I came back at 8:00pm, when it was dark. Here I start working at 6 am and I’m done by 3pm, I still have 6 hours with light! Isn’t it crazy? We have 12 hours with light everyday of the year in Ecuador.

How many differences! How many changes I’m living, how different is the way of thinking of some Americans. OK, the Americans that I have met, how they think about pregnancy, abortion, adoption…. I met 2 girls who are adopted and it’s very interesting how natural they take the situation. I also met two different couples that adopted kids from Guatemala, the kids are from Central America, I talked to these children in Spanish and they couldn’t understand me, they just speak English. Children who look like me  growing up like Americans!


Later in the season: We (the other 2 interns and I) still work a lot. Things are definitely starting to slow down but we have a lot stuff to do, since the WWOOFers are gone and there are no more volunteers anymore. As usual we are weeding, seeding, harvesting, doing the typical chores at the farm and of course becoming comfortable with the markets and the CSA pickups. I can see the changes everyday, everywhere; there are less crops to harvest, the weather is getting cooler, days are getting shorter, leaves are turning color, there are no more snakes or mosquitoes. It looks like the cycle is closing!

Something new for me and really important has been learning how to preserve food. It is something that I have never done before. This season I have canned, frozen, dried, and fermented vegetables, herbs and fruits (following recipes from cook books). I think this knowledge is really necessary since we are farmers and we have to know how to preserve our harvest. I have learned to cook better, healthier for sure. I have been following different recipes, trying different and new flavors, experimenting a lot; now I am very curious about the food that I eat. We visited a hop farm and the local brewery from Palisade  (the place where I’m living now) after that experience beer will never taste the same for me.
I came here looking for so many answers, scientific answers, looking for uniformity, aesthetic, perfection, order, organization, trying to understand how each thing works; and that is understandable because sometimes education gives people many false conceptions and there is a strong push from society toward consumption and fast life; making you forget that nature is life, biodiversity and a frenzy of components, including us. All these months, the quiet, observing everything, trying to understand how soil, water, air, plants and animals interact made me understand that we, both, people and nature have to COEXIST.

Now I feel aware of the problems that we have; and if you just observe, feel, understand and realize that there is a problem then you respect, act and try to make changes. Now, I feel a little bit stronger physically and emotionally, with a lot of feasible ideas and utopic ideas too, but understanding clearly the following:

“Utopia is horizon: When I walk two steps, it takes two steps back. I walk ten steps, and it is ten steps further away. What is Utopia for? It is for this, for walking.” E. Galeano