Planting Ahimsa

Right now my heart goes out to our brothers and sisters at Occupy Oakland who have been arrested just this morning for non-violently exercising their first amendment rights to protest.  I have just been sent two emails with photos of our brothers and dear satyagrahis Pancho and Adalaja who help us a lot here in San Francisco both at the Free Farm and the Free Farm Stand. They teach us that we need to be a force and witness for truth and love and also to build the alternatives we want to see in our world.

Last night I was at OccupySF and talking with my friend Justin who was meeting with folks there about spreading the occupy movement into neighborhoods. Like going to the Bay View where people are occupying foreclosed houses and helping the people put in Occupy gardens there. I was thinking why not plant some fruit trees in between the palm trees at OccupySF?

The reason this movement is so important is that it does so many things including challenging  who can use public property and for what purpose. It is similar to what the Free Farm Stand recently faced. For example, what are public parks to be used for? We believe we have an emergency going on in our country and in our city, and that sharing locally grown organic produce with neighbors is a legitimate use of the park during these hard times. The same I would say for the Occupy movement, is that people need to camp out and express their frustration with the current system which is very broken.

here is our Free Farm Crew including Pancho after moving 20 cubic feet of compost at the Free Farm

as good gardeners/farmers we grow soil and as world citizens we grow the soil of peace, love, and harmony

The good weather continues and the Free Farm Stand gets more organized. Tape on the ground and signs of all kinds helping people get produce more easily. I did notice we seem to be slow giving out the produce, even though we have a lot less these day. I think it took us about an hour to give out produce to 90 people.

“Enter Here” sign

“Numbers” sign

two new volunteers…we love them!

Kimberly and Robert brought produce from the Secret Garden, including surplus sunchokes from Robert’s school garden. Jason dropped of 18 lbs of his chayote bounty from his Mission garden.

Claire picked a salad mix from Treat Commons

Last week I found out about an online article about us at a place Care2 make a difference (…about our “Victory”. The article was fine though there was an incorrect part about a church buying the land the Stand is on. The article also mentions a petition they put out that got 6,821 signatures from all over the world. Isn’t that trippy?

Talk about neighbors sharing their surplus, as we were closing down the Stand a neighbor who lives across the street came by with a big roasted pig that was left over from a party at Paul Getty’s house. Claire accepted the roasted pig and then realized there was no place to take it. I half seriously suggested taking it to Occupy and so our two new volunteers and Cat drove it down there. I later found out it was devoured by the people there and I guess that is the 1% feeding the 99%. I do feel bad not only for the pig, but for the people consuming it. I decided to leave out the photo as I found it disturbingly gross.

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