Reports from the Field

Sustainable Agriculture project in Costa Rica

Kendal Ashworth - Sustainable Agriculture project in Costa Rica


“Although it was Saturday and my first day to get to sleep in in 3 weeks I was up and ready to go at 6am. I had gotten up and was heading downstairs to use the bano when I spotted Lazaro. I was determined he was not going to milk the cow without me. I ran back upstairs and got dressed and headed to the barn. After about 30 minutes he was ready for me. With the cows back legs tied, and her teets cleaned we set out to milk her. It is not as easy as it looks. There is definitely a skill to it that takes practiced. After learning the proper technique so that the milk comes out, and not back up, I worked on the cow until I got tired. Lazaro took over with quite an impressive speed; however, it was matched by the speed that the two of us jumped when the cow decided to poop, not once, but twice, and peeped once. We managed to save the milk but after I went inside I realized my clothes weren’t as lucky.

Since I was staying on the farm for the weekend Donald and Xiani invited me to go to the supermercado after breakfast. I love going to super markets in foreign countries and seeing the products. This one was great. We went to one that caters to vendors so it was sorta a cross between a grocery store and a Costco. I walked in and the music was blaring- Sir Mix-a-lot’s ‘Baby Got Back.’ I enjoyed looking at the products and labels and learning some more Spanish. I was also excited that we bought some flypaper. In addition to the mosquitoes being bad this week the moscas were too. Over the next two days I kept checking out the 2 sheets as the becamecompletely covered which gave me an odd pleasure. Xiani was delighted in my happiness as well. She said she had a volunteer once that thought it was cruel and wanted to unstick the flies.

The afternoon was lazy and I napped a little after taking some allergy medicine that Donald gave me. Apparently I was bitten by several bugs that were causing more swelling. My left elbow and wrist were completely swollen and hot and I had a few areas on my legs that were slightly swollen. And to top it off I had a huge bite on the front of my neck. I am definitely not going to miss the bugs after I leave.

That evening Danielle arrived. Danielle is a 26 year old volunteer from Delaware that was going to be at the farm for a week. I was bummed she hadn’t arrived the previous week but was excited to meet her. Danielle speaks Spanish so she’ll have no problems at the farm. On Sunday I did sleep in until a whopping 7:30, Donald spent the morning giving Danielle a tour of the farm so I just putzed around until when Xinia asked if I wanted to milk the cow again. I jumped at the chance and this time I did a little better. It definitely takes practice. And even better- the cow didn’t use the bathroom this time. Xiani and I decided it must have been due to Lazarol”

Read more on Kendal’s Blog

Posted by Kendal Ashworth – 2013

Sustainable Farming Initiative – Costa Rica

Nomad Rating
Project Impact
Extra Activities
Author Bio

Kendal Ashworth