Emily June here, a new member on the Compass Green spring tour. The scoop on me is, I love food and I love people and I love this gorgeous, planet! Most of all I love feeling good and eating a nutritious meal has much to do with that, so you can imagine, this spring tour with CG is giving me a lot to chew on as we cruise in and out of towns to teach at schools down here in Southern California. I traveled from Milwaukee, Wisconsin to jump into the spring CG action.
CG is ending our second week of touring in Southern California. We have already taught at elementary, middle, high schools and one community colleges along our way from Los Altos, to Paso Robles, Santa Maria and Santa Monica, Ventura and now Los Angeles. I feel much like an alien surfing through the infamous traffic of LA. At times in the midst of the sea of fast driving (and very slow driving) cars I feel as heavy as Angie, our mobile greenhouse and classroom filled with soil and plants that takes us from school to school.
I spent summer last on a farm in Elkhorn, Wisconsin, called Farmwise, working with youth in the garden and I do believe that there is nothing more fun than getting into the soil and exploring all the magical things that happen there with a posy of kids, young and old by your side.
When Justin and I roll up to a school surrounded by concrete and asphalt and invite students out from their classrooms and into the truck to see a scrumptious little pad of earth, a home to plenty plants, on wheels! – faces light up. We talk about ground, earth, soil – compost. We talk about water, rain and catching it. We talk about sun. We talk about how we can give back to the soil so that it can give back to us all. We talk about poisons that are sprayed on plants – yuck! We talk about relationships. Getting to know your farmers and the relationships plants have with each other and the tinsy-tinsy organisms in the soil.
Then, we show off our veggie oil pump and filter system and talk about recycling used materials. We talk about getting around on veggie oil that comes from the good ol’ kitchen. We talk about pollution that comes out of exhaust pipes and how getting fueled on veggie oil waste creates a lot less of that stuff we don’t like. We talk about asthma and illness. We talk about strong bones and calcium rich broccoli leaves. We talk about a lot of real stuff.
And this is the kind of stuff that makes all those miles worth the trip.
March 7th, at Unplug LA in Santa Monica, we rolled up seed bombs with the kids before the doors opened and invited them to find empty spaces in their neighborhoods to plant them. It was fun. They were stoked! We were stoked! And pretty soon those seeds in little, clay, ball chambers will be stoked when they find some ground and water! After that we created nick-names for ourselves and joined the Unplug LA group, packed away our cell phones and computers and learned how to play again without the digital leash that has come to make itself so unavoidable in our lives. We did arts and crafts with total strangers, became friends, sang songs, got barefooted, danced and not once did anyone there step away to check there text messages, voicemails or emails. The mission of the night was to unplug so that we all could just be, and just be we did.