One of our oldest hotels, Harbour House, established a garden a few years ago so they could grow their own produce to serve exquisitely prepared, organic meals to diners.
A little later, they built a kiosk, a farm stand, so we could purchase, on the honour system, fresh produce daily. A jar sits on the counter, stuffed with bills and coin, proving the popularity of the stand.
A week ago, for the first time this season, I walked through the garden, admiring healthy, clean, weed-free rows of veggies with greenhouses sitting on the periphery.
The place felt like my own back yard…peaceful, quiet, fresh and welcoming.
It was easy to forget the farm is behind a bustling hotel, at the head of our busiest harbour, just a few blocks from the center of our village.
I marveled over the tidiness of the gardens. Then I noticed a young woman in the distance, energetically watering one area of the acreage.
Later, I caught up to her. She told me she came to the island, scooped a job in the hotel’s dining room and decided to stay. It’s not hard to believe she’d be “scooped”. Good serving staff are like gold during the summer months when visitors descend and explore. Obviously this was a hard worker.
While she was talking, I wished I could stop her and tape her enthusiasm. I didn’t interrupt, knowing it would have been even better than capturing honey dripping from one of the hives.
I decided to see if I could find some Nubians so I could stroke their velvet ears. They never surfaced from their shade, but some sheep were ready to pose.
I couldn’t resist slipping in for a peek inside a couple of greenhouses. The smell of soil and fresh greenness created visions of a green bean salad with fresh tomatoes, oil, vinegar and herbs.
I had to come back and visit her farm stand. With my camera. Soon.
Cha-Zang! Today – a week later – a friend and I met for an organic brunch at the Hotel.
Turns out we both planned to pay a visit to the farm stand after brunch.
When we arrived at the kiosk, I scooted toward the farm gate where I scanned the acreage, camera in hand. The young woman was not working, nowhere to be seen. Disappointed, I walked back to my friend.
We took our time choosing our produce – planning menus as we made our selections.
Suddenly I sensed someone behind me!
I turned around and it was HER!
Please meet my new hero: