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2005-03-07 - 11:12 a.m.

I Finally finished that long overdue invoice and sent it over to the Orchard where we sold produce last summer and Fall!! The last delivery of produce was OCT 26th, but the invoice wasn't written until March 1.

At least I got it done. It required a couple of hours of letting the girls freely play, wrecking the whole house in the process, mediating their own disputes while I tuned them all out and did all the calculations (OVER AND OVER AGAIN! I kept getting different results... so wouldn't write the bill until each calculation came up with the SAME result twice! )
It's really annoying as I am GREAT at mental math and can do stuff in my head even FASTER than my engineer husband, however give me anything requiring actual using of a calculator as there are decimals or fractions etc.... and I take just FOREVER and make TONS of errors! None of those are really MATH related, but rather my horrid typing skills wreak havoc. I constantly drop a digit here or there by typing it too lightly, or reverse #s (That undiagnosed dyslexsic tendency that I sometimes become aware of....)

Better late than never.

Westely has been finishing up taxes and it was pitiful how poorly the farm business did last year. At least if we get paid by that Orchard we'll do better THIS year! Hey- now is as good a time as any to send the bill.... Maybe they'll get a refund and then actually have the cash to pay us. If not I will just get pid in produce. (Whether they want to do that or not)

It turns out we are owed $70

With a big family it won't be hard to consume $70 of the fine organic produce of the items they see that we ourselves don't produce.

It was 61 degrees yesterday with today's forecast predicting a high of 62 degrees! Makes me want to try an early crop of radishes. Westley said be patient and wait as he needs to mow then till the soil.

I think however I am going to get this years FArmer's Almanac today and see if there are any recommended early planting days for this region. Radishes grow so quickly that if I get some seed in the ground its possible we'll have some BEFORE Westley gets to preparing the soil! I think they do well with temerature fluctuations. And if not, it won't hurt to have wasted just a few seeds and a little time.

Now to try to find Quentin and Michelle- the BEST Farmer MArket Managers we ever met that are reportedly a few hours south of here. If I can come across them via the web it would be a fun and worthwhile drive to visit them as well as see what they want planted for the summer. They always paid VERY well. Great to work with- so much so that it would be worth driving to sell through them. They are good farmers with great marketing and business sense, a combination which we are discovering is rare.

Westley predicts we get stiffed by our local Purcellville Orchard where they know how to farm but have NO Business sense (or they'd cut back the damn branches that destroy cars that might like to drive in.... thus limiting their market of expensive produce by virtually ensuring that anyone with a NICE car won't go there! Hmmm.... who buys more expensive organic produce?? Maybe I'm mistaken, but I'd think those in NICE cars just MIGHT have more disposable income.... and anyway, NO ONE , regardless of WHAT kind of car WANTS to have it scratched! And being on a Main divided Road without a sidewalk limits the # of WALKERS that would go there...
So I swear the only clientel that place here gets are OTHER farmers. If they don't pay them, the way they didn't pay us... well that market then continues to shrink.

Hmmm... Maybe its a ploy to have the business fail....

Tax write off?

But that theory still makes little sense to me.

I just think that though great farmers, they suck at business and marketing.

My sister in law said the one lady there was downright unfriendly so she won't go back.
I experienced being told "I think the bushel holds four buckets of fruit" as I handed the kids each a bucket for picking.

The only problem was that even FIVE buckets were shy of a full bushel. I was annoyed but let it go at the time as the kids were tired and ready to go. But I knew I'd been had so to speak.

Now if you ran an Orchard for a dozen years, you'd KNOW how many buckets fill your bushel.
The only explaination there is BEING INTENTIONALLY CHEAP AND DISHONEST so as to actually get MORE money for less produce. OF COURSE the bushel container WAS NOT FULL with four buckets. Good think I was WISE ENOUGH to have filled five to begin with in response to the comment. I guess I have a good instinct for picking up dishonesty. Really... I have a GREAT track record of intuitively KNOWING when someone is lying to me.

(EVEN TO the point once at a conference of warning my husband to "BE CAREFUL" when talking to one guy. I said "I know it sounds CRAZY, but I am getting STRONG instinct to NOT TRUST HIM AND TELL HIM YOUR BUSINESS PLAN." then I blurted out "He's MAFIA"

My husband looked at me in awe and said "How do you know that?"

I said "I haven't a clue... but I just think he is, and think he's not to be trusted."

(THey were about to go to lunch)

I later was told I was CORRECT.It was unnerving in a way. My husband hadn't listened, the business plan was then handed to the man who acted like he was interested in being an investor, and the mafia connected company tried to run it themselves. They ran it to the ground - and in that case I FULLY understand the utility of this. The Mafia connection was later also revealed.

Anyway.... these things have happened rather seldom, but enought to know that I TRUST those weird moments of unexpected insight.

A few others:
*Two associate asked Westley to invest in their joint business venture. I said NO and although Westley was going to do it he didn't. My rational was not the business plan, it was simply that while I trusted the one man I had STRONG instinct to not trust the OTHER. A few years later the one I did trust told us of how the venture failed and more importanty (AS MOST START UPS DO FAIL so that's TO BE EXPECTED... and you invest EXPECTING failure and the SLIM strange potential of highly rewarded rare success...) we were told of the severed friendship and the intense hurt by the irresponsibility and dishonest selfishness of the one guy who never seemed to do what he committed to do. It was what I KNEW would happen.

*When on summer break August 17, 1988 waking at 3:32 AM, looking at the clock, and knowing my roommate who had been in a coma after a car accident three days earlier had just died. I went back to sleep and got the phone call the next morning.

On that occassion I also called in to the radio station I was interning at WKJY/WHLI on Long Island and told the secretary I wouldn't be in that day. She said "I know, are you OK?"
And she then said some strange thing about my roommate at the time like "She is at peace, but she's going to still be here in spirit to help others through" I don't honestly recall the exact words. But something like that. I got off the phone and asked my family if they had called me in sick for the day for me... everyone said "No"

When in the next week, I went right to the secretary's office to talk with her. I said, "You said something on the phone you had no way of knowing about as no one told you."

She said simply, "Oh- I'm psychic, although I don't go telling everyone this." and then she told me that she SAW my roommate and in detail described how at 3:32 the morning of her death she saw her and she saw her boyfriend. She told me I was to reach out to him. She described them both in great detail.
It wasn't scary or weird at the time. It just was what happened, and when these odd things occassionally are part of one's experience they don't seem surreal. They just are, like any other event in life is part of one's experience.

*After returning to college that Fall I was at a dance or something (I forget what- a band playing I think) and I suddenly thought I HEARD my old roommate's voice say "Go to the ladies bathroom"
I went in the bathroom to find my old roommates best friend hysterical grieving her death and I offered her support.

There are more I don't want to write about.

My daughter Katerina happens to really be named after my friend who died. Her mother used the knickname of Katerina for her as she liked and wanted to name her that although her husband didn't , so they named her something else in compromise.

But her mother always called her Katerina, and she shared that with me.

I guess my thoughts turn to her as it feels like a loss of a child for me in some ways, although having children not live with me could NEVER be the same as they are still living and we still communicate. It could never be as difficult of the finality of having to let go to one who is really dead.

I was thinking of the death of a child as Westley and I watched a fantastic movie Sat night called IN AMERICA. I found it at the Purcellville library along with a bunch of non fiction POV (Point of View) documentarys.

The documentarys all seem new and I am sure were bought during the recent controversy of the stupid Loudoun Govt attempting to control what the library board of trustees buys with their allocated county funds. They were idiots in trying to exercise control over the library to enforce NO pornography (as if the librarians intended on purchasing that) and also trying to say that NO ENTERTAINMENT DVDs should be bought! What assholes... saying idiotic things like "If someone can't afford to buy DVDs they shouldn't have a DVD player"

That was the oh so stupid SUGARLAND run Rep on the Board of Supervisors- he who happens to represent the area of Loudoun (and almost the only area of Loudoun) where there REALLY is poverty! Asshole! But even we don't buy DVD's but rely on the library!

Westley went to an Ag Extension training once where the cop trained in laws and mentioned the state police motto... in latin... really means "Don't *%&^ with the farmer's"

I wish the govt would change their motto to "Don't *%&S with the librarians!"

But I am loving the fantastic "didactic" DVDs I imagine they spitefully chose as I have watched THE WEATHER UNDERGROUND and am about to watch TAKING ON THE KENNEDYS:One Man's race against a political dynasty, and other enlightening DVDs that are not labeled as "entertainment"

Oh and the stupid legistation thankfully was recognized as assinine.

I swear the local yocals who are so afraid of anyone other than themselves figured out that librarians are some of the most subversive group around today....but they haven't figured out that it isn't DISNEY movies that will be threatening to their children! So BRING ON THE non fiction....

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