The sun shone feebly over the hills covered with morning mist. Alive with nature’s clarion call, the valley arose to greet the new day.
It was my first morning at the Mindful Farm Community. I awoke bright and early and savored the surprise of the magical dawn that unfolded.
Amid the calls of curious birds, I heard the clink and clank of kitchen utensils at a distance. I descended the stone stairway and made my way to the kitchen.
Pi Nan, the former monk turned farmer, the founder of the community, was cooking breakfast all by himself.
Brim with enthusiasm, he enjoyed each moment of involvement.
‘Can I help you Pi Nan?’ I asked.
‘Yes, of course. Can you cook something with Zuccinni? We have a lot from the farm but I don’t know how to cook it.’ he shared humbly.
‘No problem Pi Nan, I can do that ‘ I said and got to work.
I made a broth of Zucchini with lemongrass, fennel and mushroom sauce. At a wizardly pace, he made four dishes at the same time.
At 8 am, Pi Nan rang the breakfast bell. Everyone assembled and got themselves a plateful of food.
We sat facing the rising sun and enjoyed the meal in complete silence, mindfully.
Once we finished, I got up to wash the dishes. In the community people take turns to cook and clean. I chose to help my friends cleaning the dishes.
Down to the last dish to clean,
My fellow work-mate Rafa and I smiled at each other.
Just twelve hours ago, I was completely new to the community and now suddenly, I felt quite at home.
After a moment of thinking, I realised why.
‘You know, the easiest way to feel at home anywhere Rafa?
‘No, What is it?’
‘ The easiest way to feel home is by helping to clean up. Once you do that, you’re not a guest or a stranger anymore.
You’re part of the home, part of family.’
‘Oh yes ! I too feel the same ‘ said Rafa laughingly as we washed the last dish.
Breathing in the fresh mountain air, I wondered,
‘ Isn’t this beautiful planet we all share our home too?’
‘And if so,
Then are we tidying it up in the best way we can?’
The mist in the valley and in my mind, cleared up at this realization.
And with a clear mind, ready to act,
I picked up the broom,
And my spirit,
To do my part,
One choice at a time.