So last week was the 50th Elmore field day was on. For those who are not aware this is the largest and one of the best field days in country Victoria.
When I was growing up the field day was famous for a very farm orientated thing, big tractors, big headers silos and farming stuff. It is still this but now with the rise of hobby farms and small holders in the last 30 years there has been a shift to include items that best fit small holders, horse people and just generally those interested in the country.
It was a great day we wandered around chatting and had a great time she was in awe of the amount of stuff and when she got tired was happy to jump in the backpack I have for carrying her and just enjoy the spectacle. She got to see the sheep being sheared, crops cut and we got to see a friend who is PDC graduate from up that way who was supporting the WWOOF at the event.
On the way up we discussed the countryside passing through the type of country I remember as a kid when I used to go to collect firewood with my father on a Saturday morning.
For me as with taking the kids to my parents place or them realising that roast chicken is a chicken and roast pork is a pig. Seeing how the country functions and that there are other aspects than the bohemian inner city life they lead is important.
As much as Australians pride themselves on the self image of the outback and of them being a rugged country people the reality is that most people’s connection with the land is tenuous at best and mostly just plain broken. The lack of understanding of where our food comes from and how it is produced and who does it leads to a great many of the environmental and social issues that we see.
When we go for the cheapest food we push the farmer to produce the cheapest item to match the imported item or support the duopoly here in Australia. It comes at the cost of the land, farmers are pushed to produce it cheaper and ‘better’ even if damages his future on the land. That is the reality.
So head out of the city and see how your food is produced, visit a field day or if you are lucky enough a real farm. Take your family they will all benefit from it.
After all it is harder to screw over someone you know or at least understand the situation of.
But for me the highlight was just the spending time with my little girl. She will grow up soon and probably won’t want to hear anything from her father at time so getting in now and letting her see that there is more to the world she lives in is important.
Oh and on the way up I spotted some clumping bamboo on a road side. So on the way back i checked it out. It was nice.
Good thick walls be perfect for building and definitely appeared to be clumping type. I mentioned it my friend as it close to where she lives and a good find from foraging point of view for the work she is doing on her place. I also grabbed a root cutting so I will see how that goes. I would like to grow some in a large pot. It is handy to have as a building material like this around for stakes or trellising.
Potted up the root cutting at home that night
Oh and see below for a bit of country ingenuity my daughter thought was funny