Conventional wisdom supports the contention that explicit decisions made early in life have the potential to make the greatest impact on one’s life. But what if some of those impactful “decisions” are not explicit? Sweetlife Farm is not recalled by either of us as an explicit decision–or was it?
My wife reminds me regularly that when we decided to buy the 10 acres that are now known as Sweetlife Farm and she glowed radiant with the gardening prospects, I announced emphatically, “Fine, just remember that I don’t intend to be trapped there by becoming a farmer!”
It is not a case of who’s wearing the pants in the family, although on our cycling jaunts we often realize too late to change, that one or the other of us is wearing the other’s bike shorts. It is more the case that she has a keener appreciation of the pleasure that she derives from watching things grow-now a shared pleasure that she brought to our lives.
Though not seemingly explicit, there is little doubt that our exposure to the lives the Nearings achieved for themselves in New England informed our decisions through the years to grow things for ourselves and seek to approximate that quality of life to the greatest extent possible, except Helen’s food offerings, which we will take up at another time.
What else factors in? A desire for: maximizing independence; taking up the challenge of living and working with nature; incorporating as many natural elements of the growing cycle as practical; eating well and sharing the whole experience with others.