The big day to visit the farm, and present Joel with my work (so far), had finally arrived!
He had given us specific directions as to where to park, and how to approach the house properly at the time we arrived.
I was thinking...
“What if he doesn't like it?”
“What if the copy we brought doesn't work?”
(We had brought a copy on cd, jump drive, and on the laptop).
What if he's really a jerk?
We walked into the house, astonished at it's beauty and age. I've never been in a house that old before. The woodwork was done by hand, the hearth is a historic marker, and it depends on as little energy as possible.
We were welcomed into the sitting room, and I felt privileged to be sitting in the same place as Michael Pollen, and many others who have gone through a journey to discover their food.
We gave him the cd to play (I was shocked that he had an Imac), and it didn't work. We brought the jump drive, and it worked! He listened to it for a bit, and said “Well, if the point of this meeting is to give you the go ahead to continue, go ahead and keep doing what you're doing. Once completed, we'll bring in someone to make copies to sell at our store, and we can probably put it up on our website for people to listen.”
I was glad, but also astonished at the same time. These folks had to have a lot of trust in us to let us into their home, wander around the farm, and be let into their lives this much.
When we teased him about the Imac, he said “I got this laptop so that I could write whenever I was on trips. I don't really know how to do anything else with it.” His book collection does really show his colors. It was a testament that him and Teresa, and his family, spend a lot of time thinking about who they are, and why they do what they do.
Their houseguests were downstairs, so we began our tour around the farm. Everyone is welcome there. They really do want people to come see where their food comes from. I believe this is a direct contrast to so many “farms” where you are not allowed to see the animals, for various reasons. These can be found and exposed more deeply in “The Omnivore's Dilemma” by Pollen, or “Everything I want to do is illegal” by Salatin.