Friday, January 16, 2009

Day 2 - Water`

Obviously, a fundamental part of the Ridge to Reef program is the understanding of watersheds. We discussed and then experienced the flow of water from the high points, through farmland and over road networks, down to the confluence of these streams at the ocean and how it effects the health of the coral reef. We are lucky to be situated just a few miles from the ocean. Today we explored the Caladona Gut, the beautiful watershed that surrounds us. I have always associated water with emotion. Today's hike and discussion helped me to visualize the role of water in our lives.

We followed the flow of water from the farm and interacted with the many species of plants and animals who must live with our run-off. Like the fresh water I wash my face with at my cabana in the morning, I followed the path that my wastewater, facewash, and toothpaste take. The "beneficial" aspect of this farmer training course is to understand that the goal of sustainable farming should not only be to continue to exist, but to leave the soil, the water, the air a little better off. Better than sustainable.

Would the ginger flower bloom drinking your run-off? Would the soursop taste as tangy sweet if it were fed your facewash? Do your pestisides make the sandbox trees grow tall and strong and spiky? Do the horses want to drink your toothpaste?

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