So I'm at my friend Farmer Sue's Art Barn at Morning Glory Farm yesterday on a little hay ride around her field when she swings the 50-year-old tractor into the woods and then stops suddenly. She turns around and leans over the flatbed and says:
"Ya' know, I believe that if you do the right things and you trust, then when you ask God or whoever or whatever you believe in for something, you will get it. It may be in a different package than you were expecting, however. The trick is to be able to recognize it."
She said that not long ago, she wanted to expand the farm to the remaining twelve acres that surrounded her current six acres but the price for land where she is (where land is getting snapped up for subdivisions) was $75,000 per acre, way beyond anything she could dream of affording.
Sue then went on to point out the gorgeous house next to the woods, on the piece of land that a couple from Atlanta bought. Turns out this couple fell in love with Sue's animals. They now allow them to graze on their field of grass every single day.
Next, Sue pointed out an elegant new horse barn behind the woods. The owner of this barn keeps her show horse there. Turns out she lets Sue keep her filly with the show horse for company, and she lets Sue board her other horses inside the barn during the winter.
So, no, Sue didn't get to buy that land. But her land use ability grew in a very different way, a way she couldn't have imagined, a way that cost her nothing and enriches her life immensely with relationships she never anticipated.
At about this point, with the way Sue was telling the story, so raw and pure and heartfelt, I started to choke up a bit. In fact, I thought I was going to let out an audible sob, when I heard one 11-year-old say to another, "I thought she broke down," meaning the tractor. Little did they realize that someone was about to break down, in the back. Me.
Back by the barn, where many of the sweet seemingly-straight-from-Central-Casting animals were mingling freely and happily, I kept thinking about Sue and how she allows herself to free-fall into the world's hands. How she left her city life nine years ago and built this place from nothing, animal by animal, art party by art party. How the impossible has become possible for her, little by little, in ways that couldn't even be predicted, and how she is currently perched on the precipice of unbridled opportunity, with several provocative directions readying themselves for her.
It was about then that I saw it. This pig with wings (okay, it was two chickens in just the right position to suggest wings, but still!) and I thought of that saying, When Pigs Fly, that usually means never, that something isn't possible.
Well, folks, this pig is flying. And anything, apparently, is potentially an option.
(Don't worry about the goat stuck in the hay--that's silly Larry and he worked it out!)
(And the lamb in the second picture is Cecil--he was shaved because he just had surgery. He is Farmer Sue's bottle-fed baby and he may be the cutest little guy in the world. And he smells like Heaven.)
Nurturing sustainability close to home and around the world. (And other food for thought!)