Ashley spreading potash on the high coffee farm
Yesterday was a rather magical day. Not because anything necessarily beyond belief happened, but more of in the sum-is-greater-than-the-whole-of-its-parts kind of way in terms of sequence of events. Also, remember, this is Hawaii and I live on a farm, so take “magic” with a couple grains of sand. First, I’ll get to the rooster murder…
The veteran WWOOFer on the farm is Ben. Ben grew up in a log cabin in Western Colorado and has had a long series of diverse jobs leading him up to his 1.5 year stay here milling coffee beans. Pretty much everything you touch in the WWOOF shack, our communal living space including kitchen, shower, and bathroom, has been involved with Ben at some point. From the over-grown kale he planted in the garden to the hideous table cloth on the large picnic table. My first day exploring the farm, I found 2 bee-bee guns laying by the table. Ben informed me that they were his and that he has another one in his cabin “just in case.”
In case of what? I wondered, but he is a man of uncomfortably few words, so I let it go for now.
If you’ve ever spent time on a farm, or a place where roosters live, you would know that Babe and Charlotte’s Web and other farm movies are full of shit when the rooster cockle-doodle-doo’s quaintly at sunrise. No. Roosters cry out whenever the f they want to, mostly starting at 3:30 AM on our farm. The assholes of the farm, as I call them, these buttheads will make as much noise as they want, stomp all over the plants in the garden, and cluck over to your cabin and let out the loudest cry in the middle of the night, I swear to God, just to see if you’re in there. One morning at a restless 4 AM, I counted the time in between cockle-doo’s and one rooster averaged a cry out, literally, every 8 seconds. F this guy.
This one in particular was the king of the assholes, and he came around every morning to just to piss us off. We tried to think of the douchiest name to call him and so we settled on Dwight. He looked like any other typical rooster from a child’s storybook, if a little small, and he was a relentless dick-wad.
Last Wednesday morning, Ashley and I awoke after a surprisingly satisfying slumber and noted that it must have been that Dwight hadn’t come by much before sunrise.
After a typical 8-hour day of squatting down and pulling weeds from the trunk of coffee trees with our hands and our rusty, Tetanus-teeming sickles, we mentioned Dwight again, and Ben lifted his head out of the can of sardines he was eating from to let us in on some early morning happenings.
Eloquently, he said, “Who’s Dwight? The rooster? Oh, I shot him this morning.”
"WHAT? You killed Dwight?"
"Yea, you guys didn’t hear me this morning? About 5 AM." Wow.
"What did you do with the body?"
"Well, normally I make a stew out of them or something, but I had to go to work, so I just threw him on top of the mulch pile."
His face held no expression of emotion. He emptied out the rest of the sardine contents into his mouth and headed to his cabin.
Drudging back to his private living quarters, he nonchalantly let out, to no on in particular, “I watched that bird hatch in the fire pit last year and saw him grow.”
I guess that’s why the other WWOOFers stayed out Ben’s way.
We are going on a hike to find the citrus orchard, apparently bursting with ripe with grapefruits, oranges, giant lemons, and pomelos, that exists above the high coffee tree field. Supposedly there are also green tea plants. I’ll recount our fantastic Saturday later.