Tuesday, July 23, 2013

A Hot Time

I finally finished another warp of towels, only my fourth this year.  Again I congratulate myself for recognizing that the craft fair deadline was a burden and I've settled down to enjoy weaving.  I had an email a while back from another CERT volunteer, requesting some towels from a neutral palette.  I finished these on the eve of our volunteer fire department fundraiser and barbecue so I emailed Norma to say I'd bring them in case she was still interested.  She bought two.
The Red Rock Rattlers CERTs (community emergency response team) are volunteers who feel our first line of duty is to support our VFD and we always work the picnic.  Alexia once again volunteered to help with the childrens games.  Saturday morning she woke up with an extreme case of bed head so the first line of business was a bath.
Her chief responsibility was to staff the face painting booth and the theme seemed to be vampire.
Care Flight arrived as part of their public outreach.  Several of us haven't been certified in helicopter landing protocol, so the crew agreed to provide onsite training.  I was fascinated by what they do and can do, and while I'm glad to receive the certification, I'm not sure how relevant it is.  I mean, they come out here and land without help securing a site all the time. They did it the very next day.

They welcomed the kids to check it out and Lu jumped at it.  The crew is the pilot and two nurses and they can do everything except x-ray and lab.  They go everywhere and were onsite at the Hawthorne Depot disaster earlier this year.  It's nice to know.
Ultimately Lulu succumbed to the temptation and painted her own face.  This was not her best work.  It was a 100 degree day and by the time we left, we were both exhausted.

There is a farmers market of locals out here in our valley.  It's every other week and residents volunteer their yards.  Currently the site is Steve and Sunny's - announcements are by the massive group email by which we valleyites are connected.  I set up a table the next day, Sunday, and in spite of the extreme heat and minimal attendance, I had good sales.  This might be the venue I was looking for.
Today was my trip to town.  It was CSA (community supported agriculture) pick-up day.  Delivery comes from Fallon, about an hour east of Reno in the most improbable place to grow anything.  At the turn of the last century, the Newlands Water Project was approved in Congress and water was diverted from the Truckee River and piped to the high desert in Fallon.  It shows the complete lack of regard for the Indians who lived at the end of the river at Pyramid Lake and thanks to an endangered fish, they were able to reclaim their water in court.  This has led to a perpetual tug-of-war between the farmers in Fallon and the Indians in Nixon.  It has also made the farmers shrewd about water use.  I visited Lattin Farms last year, where our box comes from, and they have developed an impressive system of giant hoop houses and drip watering. 

It continues to be a friction point, and I know people on both sides of this conflict.  My contemporaries in Fallon are trying to make a living on their farms, and small farms are always marginal.  On the other hand, I want so much to preserve the natural beauty that is unique to the high desert.  Pyramid Lake would be a wetlands, had our native tribes not won their case in court. 
This is what the delivery looks like.  It's accomplished by a huge network of volunteers at multiple locations.  St. Mary's Hospital has been onboard since the start and that's my pickup point.   I'm sure this is different from other CSA programs as this is the only game in town.  Nothing grows here and we who subscribe are grateful.  Actually, that top box is mine, now that I think about it.  Mike is always our delivery guy from Fallon and this summer he's enjoying the company of two of his grandsons. 
Every box is like Christmas in summer.  I'm in awe of what the Lattins are able to produce.  Each box comes with a page, listing the produce, suggested recipes and a note.  Today for the first time, the note was from Rich Lattin, thanking us in all humility for supporting them and for helping them move into this new generation of food.  It was a risk they took when they accepted the CSA challenge.  They had to step forward to organic food.  I have no doubt they did it with trepidation but I'm so thankful they did.  The remarkable thing is that they have actually dropped prices.  You should see us all cluster around the delivery truck.  It's like "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" in daylight.

1 comment:

Hilary said...

The towels are the turned taquete?? Love the colors.....LOVE.
I got myself a Nutribullet at Target....you can get them at Amazon. It is more than a juicer, more an extractor, and I have been loving putting all kinds of fruits and veggies in it for breakfast, and sometimes lunch.......I really love it. Your CSA delivery made me think what wonderful things you could do with it.