This morning, awakened by the song of the geese (not very elegant, although very efficient), we fell back asleep. Daniel and Christina had something to do in a nearby village and only left us the task of feeding the chickens at 7:30.
I see you laughing, but there are 3 different sorts and they tend to change enclosures, and we must prevent them. It’s funny. For more detail, they are hens for eggs with a total of 36 eggs every day, white hens for meat who live with a rooster that can absolutely not mount the egg-hens because fetuses are not cool in an omelet, and a few multicolor hens and chickens in a third enclosure. There are also 7 young chickens still yellow and 6 chicks that arrived today, 2 ducks and 2 geese in the courtyard, the formers for ducklings and the latter for company (and song).
We then went to feed the hens at 7:30 and met Freedie, a friend who helps at the farm when there is a lot of work. He told us that Daniel gave him a task for the morning with which we should help: picking up dejections! There are 4 horses (more will be said later) at the farm, and their poo is a wonderful fertilizer. There are large amounts of it here and there from the entrance of the farm to the sill of the house, in heaps in the grass. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger! A shovel, another tool (I don’t know the name and don’t have internet access), wellies and empty big bags for 50kgs of rice: these were our tools in the horseshit-quest! Ben estimates that we picked up around 80kg in around 3 hours, that were matched by Freddie in the same time, on his own…
When Daniel got back (on horseback) we started cooking, and Christina joined us for a lovely meal and a long chat. In the middle of the afternoon arrived a new much nicer task: wash the horses. There is seldom enough time to brush and clean them around working time and they spend a lot of time outside on their own, so sometimes, they really do need a shower!
We started with the 6-months old baby girl, watched like a hawk by the mother. Followed a young mare who is still learning (we give her fallen-from-the-tree guavas when she recognizes her name, she loves it), then the baby’s mother (same age, still learning too, but can’t be mounted so long as she is milking). Finally, when Daniel got back with the last one, the last shower was for this lonely male, arrived at the farm 5 days ago from an almost-abandoned place, scorned by the mares and covered in ticks. It lasted until the night arrived and we were recompensed by a meal of gratin dauphinoise, rice and pork meat, and a desert of caramelized plantain!
The most amazing thing here is, we talk a lot with Daniel and Christina, we learn a lot about Spanish but also cooking, Colombian habits and traditions which we wouldn’t have learned in a hostel… It is also a relief to eat homemade food, even if meals are quite elaborate, they have this particular taste that restaurant-food doesn’t have. And besides, it is a drastic change in rhythm that we welcome, cooking with other people, looking at the countryside, reading in hammocks…
We still don’t exactly know how long we will stay in Tierra Dulce, but for now, we feel well here ! See you tomorrow, X
PS : there are also baby-pigs, scared of every sound, and very cute !