Saturday, June 17, 2017

From Apples to Cider - Another Working Bee at Rod May's Farm

Many hands make light work, and the recent working bee out at Rod May's farm was no exception. On Friday another group of switched-on community members showed up to help process some of the apple harvest, share the community spirit, and to celebrate the life of an incredible man.



In the early morning sunshine a cider press was set up, tables were moved outside, and the sound of a dozen knives rang out as all available baskets, tubs and buckets were filled with apple halves. The grinder was plugged in to the solar system, and those apples were promptly turned to pulp. The pulp then moved to the press, where it was wrapped in fabric and squeezed between wooden boards to extract the juice. By lunch time, a huge crate of apples had been turned into a mountain of pulp for the hungry cows, and a large barrel of soon-to-be cider.











The Cider House String Band had us all dancing and grooving as we worked, and definitely added a few extra smiles to the tally.


The day was topped off with another standout HRN community lunch, where everyone present (and even some who weren't) brought along a dish of good, local food to share. Before lunch started we all formed a circle and, holding hands, we stood in silence, reflecting on our memories of Rod, and on his ability to still bring his community together.




In the afternoon the last apples were pressed, and as most people went back to their homes (and for some, their chooks, cows, goats and pigs), a few stayed on to help Steph, Serge and Ogy finish their veggie boxes for the next day's delivery in Melbourne.


The next working bee will be held on Friday the 30th of June for another round of cider-making, and a community pruning bee under some expert instruction. Stay tuned for more info.

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