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Krista's Travels

WWOOF Location #4 Continued

USA | Tuesday, 20 January 2009 | Views [1687] | Comments [2]

Prayer flags at entrance - Host 4

Prayer flags at entrance - Host 4

I decided to return for another week at my last WWOOF host farm, Highland Herbs, near Liffey, Tasmania. Both the land and the family have such wonderful, healthy, lovely energy it drew me right back. If I wasn't so keen to make it back to Sydney for a planned Blue Mountains stay with my good friends and then get on the plane to New Zealand, I would have considered staying all summer. The hosts are devotees of Amma, an Indian saint that has a big ashram in the state of Kerala, India, who I had heard a lot about back home right before my trip. They do yoga and meditation and I was able to join in most days. We even did some yoga nidra, a very special practice that I had before only heard of through my yoga teacher Ute and had only practiced with her. I nearly fell off my chair in glee when Greg mentioned after lunch one day "would anyone like to do some yoga nidra?" I also learned a very lovely healing mantra from them called the Maha Mrityunjaya mantra, which sings through my mind throughout the days now.

The family also has a charitible organization called Medicine for Tibet. They built a clinic in Tibet and the organization raises money for the clinic. The wife/mother, Libby is a doctor who practices both allopathic and natural medicine, and is part of the Royal Flying Doctor service, travelling to small communities in Tasmania to work now and then, and farming and hosting many wwoofers at a time (we had 7 when I left) when at home. The children (I met three, ages 9, 13, and 18) are all precocious, intelligent, energetic people, wise beyond their ages, and I suspect it has so much to do with the way their parents raised them and their being exposed to other cultures from a young age. They are a joy to talk to and be around (but the younger ones still scrap and beat up on each other like normal kids, its just that 5 minutes later they are hugging again!)

The work was more varied and enjoyable this week. I got involved with harvesting elder flowers, an enormous field of chamomile, and many strawberries and black and red currants. I "rubbed" heaps of dried peppermint through a combination threshing/winnowing table they have set up (they have the best peppermint in the world, in my opinion, and I left there with three packages of their peppermint herb for tea), I helped package up herbs for orders, and learned more about how they grow, harvest, dry, and process their herbs.

The kids took me on a beautiful bushwalk on my day off, up to the top of the rocky escarpment to see the homestead and surroundings below. Clear-cut logging in the nearby hills made the scene somehow quite familiar, but all in all, the farm is set in gorgeous surrounding and has the freshest air I've ever breathed. The prevailing winds come from the longest stretch of open ocean in the world (says Greg), which is between south africa and tasmania. Because it is a smallish land mass surrounded by ocean, even though it is at a warmer lattitude than home, tassie gets drastic weather shifts, and we went to freezing temps one night from temps in the low 90s a day earlier, just from the wind direction shifting from the landmass of australia mainland to the winds from antarctica.

The sun is incredibly intense and I'm reminded of how unfair it is that the northern countries pollute and the southern countries get the hole in the ozone layer as a result. The outrage! The injustice!

I'm missing home enough to want to settle there and just be a snowbird in the winters, rather than pursue looking for the ideal year-round climate. But I am still looking forward to my future travels in New Zealand and am content to wait until spring to see family, friends, and the bellingham food co-op once again.

Comments

1

I just quickly wanne wish you a great trip to New Zealand, and i know that travelling is hard allone sometimes. But you meet great people by joure self. greatings and take care, love to here more from you.

Cheers Mate, Rein.

  Rein de kroon Jan 20, 2009 4:59 PM

2

Krista,
I just got the email so I could read your newsy letters. Sounds like you are having a great time.
Aunt Shirley

  Shirley Burns Feb 11, 2009 4:20 PM

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