The Kalu Yala Blog
October 11, 2011by Brigitte Desvaux
Posted In: Voices of Kalu Yala
Another day, another week. Productive days, relaxing evenings, fun and games at night, this internship is already half over! From seeing wildlife like lizards, catepillars, birds, and frogs, to tidying up the garden and making a driveway, the days are filled with learning experiences that are interesting and fun!
Weeding the garden and cleaning it up not only makes the yard look like a mini paradise of homegrown goods, it’s also inspiring to see the rate at which the plants are growing. Maybe it’s superstition, but I swear that the plants know they are once again being cared for, and they show us day by day and week by week through their growth. We have a corn cob that is nearing harvest, and a new mini baby cob growing on another stalk! The squash is also nearing harvest…it has doubled in size, and is starting to turn a yellowish color! The basil is unreal, it dominates in this climate. Our awesome cook for the crew, Johnny Marriot, used some the other day to make pesto, which he poured over pasta. It was delicious! For the new magic garden and the rows between the basil and the tomatoes, we are trying to sprout more herbs and veggies including cucumber, carrots, thyme, and cilantro (unfortunately the existing cilantro got butchered by the landscaper that does the yard ).
Another project this week consisted of freeing the mango tree that was surrounded with gravel around the trunk to use for a driveway. Without a wheel barrel, this job required Max Cooper and I to shovel and lift buckets full of gravel and then transport them to the driveway. Luckily, the distance from the tree trunk to the future driveway was only about 25 feet, but when you’re carrying big buckets of gravel in the hot sun, this can feel very far! The next day was a little easier on the hard labor and focused more on computer work!
My point is that at first the days were going by slow not because they were boring, but because the pace of life was just slower and more relaxing. We were getting used to the company, getting to know the crew and community, and figuring out our projects. Now that this introduction to Panama, San Miguel, and Kalu Yala is familiar, the hours making up the days are blending into the weeks and turning into months. Though the days are productive, it stills feels that two and a half months is too short. It’s unfortunate to think about time, but there is still so much to do and realizing there is a time constraint is important to figure out what is a priority, and what will be left for future interns.