Tuesday, November 24, 2009
after a relaxing and fun weekend of hanging out at the beach, snorkeling, and a lot of well needed sleep, i am diving into the second phase of my time here at visfi. this week i am working on the farm as a volunteer, helping out in whatever areas need me most. the hours are great (five a day gets me great home grown food and beautiful living spot), and the work is hard. working on a farm is just about the hardest work you can imagine. i spent my morning today perched on top of a bohio, an ancient taino structure used for living space and ceremony, thatching the roof with big palm leaves. it was great work, really satisfying. i would chop each leaf and put it in a pile, then carry the pile up a ladder to the outside of the bohio. sitting on the slats of the roof, i would twist each leaf in with the one next to it, creating a ring of overlapping leaves. from my perch i could look out over a large section of the farm, and see how incredibly beautiful it looks from above. when Ben Jones started farming here seven years ago, this was grassland, former cattle pasture, with barely any trees. now it looks more like a forest, with green everywhere and most of it producing food. when i first got here, since i didnt know what was what, it didnt strike me as much, but looking at it from above today it was really inspirational, the abundance that is created here. after lunch, with my five hours done, i took a great nap, and then a shower. since i did laundry yesterday, i am clean and in clean clothes for the first time in two weeks, and it feels so beautiful. i am really happy here. the last two days have been really wonderful as well. i am growing closer and closer to a lot of the people here, and i have had some really fantastic conversations with folks. there is a young man named patrick who is so sweet, and such a good listener. we did a trade, where one night he told me his life story, whatever he wanted to tell me about himself, and i simply listened, without commenting, through the whole thing. then, a couple of nights ago, we switched. i had some processes that i was really in need of sharing, and he listened to those really well and was very supportive. i am so glad to have friends like that in my life, and to recognize that they come into my life everywhere i go, that i attract people like that and am able to create the situations in which these kinds of conversations happen. another amazing conversation that i had recently was with a woman named katherine who lives here on the farm. since i have been on the farm, i have been struggling with meeting my need for intimacy and physical affection. the development of trust that leads to freely flowing physical affection and reassurance always takes time, and when i am in a new situation, with new people who i love and want to be close with, it can be difficult for me to be patient with this process. so when katherine and i had a really great hug the other night, i quickly latched onto her as a person i could be affectionate with. over the next day or so, i noticed myself constantly wanting to be close to her, looking for that affection in an indirect way. so i told her about this pattern, and my need for affection, and it led us into an incredibly honest and upfront conversation about what both of our needs were and how we could help support each other in fulfilling those needs. it was so clear and transparent, such a great way to create intimacy very quickly. since then i have noticed that no miracle occurred, its not like we are now totally ready to touch and show love and affection for each other, but it is a little bit easier, because there is that conversation to fall back on and to help guide me. its a very powerful process. when you meet a new person, it would be great if the first thing you asked them was what are some things that you need and how can i support you in fulfilling those needs?