We’ve been at South Reen farm in Union Hall, Ireland with our host, Ann, for 6 days now – so it’s about time we brought you all up to speed!
For anyone reading who might be unsure as to why we traveled to a farm in Ireland to spend the next 2 weeks, please let us enlighten you. We are WWOOF‘ing! WWOOF is an acronym for World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms. These organizations enable people to travel all over the world to volunteer their work to learn about different lifestyles as well as the slow food movement by developing farming skills, all in exchange for room and board.
We wanted to travel, but not just. We wanted to contribute to something bigger than ourselves – whether an individual, a family or community. We reached out to Ann at South Reen farm months ago and both agreed we were a good fit for each other. So, here we are! 🙂
Picking up from the last post now…
After first arriving at Ann’s house and tucking in for the night, we awoke eager to explore our surroundings and begin the projects lined up for us. Our morning started with tea, then a guided walk around the entire property by Ann. We were also able to formally meet her boisterous South Reen farm gang.
The 3 chickens: Pick, Peel and Scratchit
The horse: Handsome, Jamal
The 3 dogs: Cheng Ling, Schmegglie and iPad
Don’t let iPad’s sweet, sleeping gimmick fool you. She is a feisty little firecracker of a pup!
This place is incredibly special. Standing in the presence of the bay, cliffs and forest takes me away from everything else on my mind. I can’t quite pin-point the feeling, but it’s exceptionally calming. It’s complete peace – everything from the frequent and sudden downpours, dog barks, moos from the cows, hums from passing bumble bees to the waves crashing on the stones at the beach below. The atmosphere creates a clean slate for your mind, a chance to think about everything, or nothing at all.
The following photos are from our very first day. It was rainy and muggy, but the views still couldn’t hide.
The landscape can quickly change from wide-open pasture to sheer jagged cliffs clashing with violent waves, to an Avatar-like forest. You can experience it all at South Reen, and we have. This being said, the maintenance never ends for Ann. When Ann’s parents first purchased the property and built the house, it became their holiday home. Originally from England, Ann’s family would spend their summers in Ireland. Ann elected to take responsibility of the property with the mission to breathe energy and life back into South Reen.
The improvements Ann has completed here are remarkable.
We consider ourselves very fortunate to be part of it.
There’s endless exploring to be done, but like any new home, first you have to get your work done.
Here are the projects we are currently working on:
- Building the vegetable garden fence
- Harvesting and laying seaweed on the outdoor vegetable garden beds
- Weeding the poly tunnel
- Fertilizing and laying seaweed on the soil in the poly tunnel
- Mending the chicken coop
- Clearing ivy overgrowth from the bungalow walls
- Cut down shrubs around house
- Cutting and clearing new path to beach from bungalow
- Building new steps from qigong area to beach
The projects can be tough, but always very rewarding.
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Blondie and the Beard