The Party Crew: Week #11 – 2018
The Party Crew
In seasonal work like farming, we see big changes from year to year in our farm crew. For most of our employees we have only 6 months of full time work to offer. So it is very normal that much of our crew just works a season or two.
One of the fun parts of this constant cycling of new folks is that it keeps the work fun and fresh. Every year another crew of young, vibrant, environmntally passionate individuals comes to the farm, and Mike and I benefit from their company.
Each crew has its own distinctive character. And as the years go by, my brain begins to file them with simple one word memory activators. Like one year we had the quiet crew. Just a random assemblage of very private, quiet people. Another year was the scandalous crew (I’ll let your imagination run wild with that one).
This year’s crew is the party crew.
Many times our crew is made of young twenty somethings with a few almost thirty-ers mixed in. But this year, our crew is slightly older – 30 being more of the average age. And the majority of them have recently moved to or back to the Madison area. Just randomly, we have a handful or employees who moved back to Wisconsin to be closer to their families in Chippewa; Wausau, etc. This distinction is important, because it meant that many of our employees did not come to their farm job with an exisiting friend group. So this crew, over shovels, transplanting, weeding, bean harvesting, etc. were open to having friendships outside of the farm, and they have bonded. They hang out all the time!
In fact they hang out and party so much together, that maybe my one word might be the hungover crew? While harvesting kale or peeling leeks or whatever, I find out what bar they went to the night before, who drank too much, how a first date went, or who was hung over yesterday and did pretty well in hiding it from me. There is constant laughter and joking. I genuiniely look forward to working in the field with them just for the time in easy chatter and laughter.
Sometimes the crew invites us to hang out with them. (Which I am truly honored by, because working and hanging out together with a power differential can be a tricky thing.) It’s always so fun – whether it’s music festivals, bars, or campfires. Last Friday night we all went to do karaoke together. There was way too much alcohol, and we pretty much took over the Hookah Cafe with our all crew rendition of Bohemian Rhapsody. (Feel bad for the crowd that had to witness this, but we had fun!) The next night they all went camping in Cross Plains and Mike and I joined them for some time around the campfire. I love a good campfire, and I love being reminded of what life was like without kids. Lots of boozing and talking about nothing at all, yet everything at the same time.
It’s hard to imagine a more fun crew than this year. I am reminded to savor their company. Seasons ebb and flow. Some years the crew is great fun, others less so. Just like some years the broccoli is tiny and the watermelon phenomenal; followed by a year of fantastic broccoli and watermelon that is less so. (psst. that’s a hint about this year… crappy broccoli, great melons!)
Cheers to our hard-working and super fun party crew!
Enjoy your veggies,