It looks to be the last day of this year’s harvest. We are a team, we have worked together for days now, we are new friends, we are ever so slightly hung over after a commemorating celebration in the co-operative press yesterday, and we all become somewhat olive experts and have have each our opinion about this year’s harvest. But we all agree that this has been a special year. Starting off a bit slow, we were a little nervous that the unfortunate harvests in Italy and Spain should have found their ways to our groves, but luckily that wasn’t the case.
Instead it was a good year for the EL groves, on the image is Vaya Makryalea, proud olive-farmer in the midst of the action. She is holding up a prize branch – you recognise that on the lush green-ness and that almost frosted surface of the olives, which just means that the oil has not begun to surge to the surface of the olive yet. These are two the factors in the quality over quantity trade-of and these olives are what gives you the rich yummy stuff!
As I go about the work on the field this morning I find myself giggling about the Greek names we have all received this week – and the work language shorthand that has developed between the Polish, English, Danish, German and Greek native tongues represented in the field. As the day<span>’s routine sets in, I find myself humming Paul Simon’s ‘You can call me Al’, which is interrupted by ‘Ela!’ ‘Schaut mal’ ‘D’ya want a hand?’ ‘Sejt’ and it occurs to me that I have added a certain notion of olive expertise to my self perception and that I will miss these guys tomorrow when we’re all done.
They can call me Al as Paul Simon sings away for my inner ear, or call me Aliki as has become my Greek name – as long as they call on me next year!
Maybe you want to join us next year? An impression of how it is to fly in from Copenhagen and help out from fabulous foodie, but fieldworker novice, Heidi.