Sunday, June 20, 2010

Coffee Planting in Finca La Paz and Cucuyo.org


Clap-Clap-Clap. My favorite part of any DR flight is the landing because people clap. Loud.

I had two reasons to fly to the DR on this trip 1) check in on my farm: see the coffee planting, check this years harvest volume, introduce my girlfriend to my second home/family and 2) help my girlfriend (she is a lady so I'll call her my lady friend) launch her Non Profit called Cucuyo.org.

Los Frios was awesome. We ate a bunch, Laura and I shared one divine mango from from my farm, Laura got to smell a few coffee flowers, and she also got to meet some of my closest friends on earth Lin, Antonio and Nerva.

There had been a ton of rain of over the last month. The shade trees seem much taller than before and the coffee planting had made some good progress. Three full days without rain and the planting will be complete. Along with some re-planting the farm will be fully planted with coffee by this July. Very exciting. This years harvest will be smaller, my main hope is for little rain during the harvest for controlled drying.

Per Cucuyo.org - After two years of development work in the Peace Corps I know first hand the challenges in organizing community events, it is challenge to get people to meetings, and to get them there on time. . . nearly impossible. Laura Scott Vaughn (my lady friend) along with some local partners has successfully organized an art program in two communities of Bonao, coordinated and selected four amazing artists, and when I left the country she had over 80 kids enrolled. She did that and the fund raising from Athens, Georgia and one visit to Bonao last year! Needless to say I'm super impressed. I helped a little with organizing and logistics. After getting the artists to their host families and oriented I had to leave on the first day of the program.

When I landed at New York/JFK airport I had both hands free for clapping, the turbulence and rough landing made the clapping and praying around me much louder. Flying doesn't scare me, but I do love to clap with everyone it does scare. Good thing because I had 2 eight hour flights before I arrived to Uganda.

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