Handweeding, flower trellising, email catch-up…not so much.
Viewed from certain angles, the farm looks great. The fields are neat, the weeds still fairly low to the ground, and the harvests as fresh and abundant as ever. The weather has been relatively cooperative, June rain notwithstanding, and we’ve had no notable pest or disease issues. An outsider would have every reason to believe the season is moving along smoothly.
Except that it isn’t. Steve was diagnosed with cancer in May, putting our weathered crew to an entirely new test. His is prognosis is good—he will make a complete recovery, following chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery—but his body is going through the meat grinder just as the fieldwork is reaching its crescendo. Farmers are notable for their stubbornness and high thresholds for pain, but even we can recognize that Steve must be allowed the time and freedom to heal. Therefore, we must reckon with a greatly diminished capacity.