The past nine months have gone by so quickly it is hard to believe all that has happened. The events that have unfolded in just the past three have caused us to look back at everything that led us to this point and question many aspects of our life that had become an accepted part of our day-to-day routine, as well as long-term goals for the future. In recounting what started this avalanche of change, I am reminded of the decision we made to transition from purely researching methods of growing food in our small urban garden and step out to approach our LGU (local government unit) with ideas of starting community gardens–something we have wanted to do for a long time.
This encounter led to the discovery of a ten-hectare piece of land to do a community project, which inspired me to learn the best way to grow food on a large scale with minimal labor and maintenance. All of this lead me to discover Geoff Lawton and his amazing projects, such as “Greening the Desert” in Jordan and his evolution of food forests. Finally, I uncovered what permaculture truly meant and this helped me to find and articulate a purpose in my life that finally made complete sense and offered actual solutions to the world’s seemingly insurmountable problems.
With this knowledge, a new mentor, a large project, and many ideas, I set out to learn all I could about implementing a large-scale permaculture project in our tropical island area. Unfortunately, as tends to happen here, the land wasn’t actually available and the project died before ever getting started. My obsession with permaculture, however, continued to grow and I knew I had to try again. I approached the Department of Agricultural with my idea and they told me about some government land I could use for a permaculture demonstration site. Around this time I noticed that there was an upcoming Permaculture Design Course at Zaytuna Farm, where I could learn from the best and get some accreditation to help make permaculture my profession. After looking into the logistics and getting some generous help from my mother, we were prepared to go to Australia so I could attend the April PDC and the Permaculture in Action course that followed to gain even more experience.
[Photo by Andy Connolly]