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  • I grew up in a house with ravines on either side. This, combined with my parents limit of 30 minutes of TV a day, led me to spend a lot of my time exploring the creeks and woods around my house. I would go out as soon as I got home from school, and my mom would have to shout out the window for me to come in at dinner time, hours later. Then I would reluctantly return, trailing Georgia red clay, often with some new rock or stick that had caught my eye, and always with big plans for the next day.

    Over the years, I spent less and less time in the ravines as playing music, schoolwork, and all the other pressures middle school and high school took over my life. I still went hiking and enjoyed the outdoors, but I definitely didn't bring as much mud and dirt into the house as I once had.

    This January, I decided to work with Global Growers in Atlanta. I was excited to learn more about farming, and to work outside everyday. My first day was spent mostly learning where things were on the farm, and the second day was spent in the greenhouse, hunched over seed trays. But the third day... the third day was something else. After shoveling compost for a couple hours, my supervisor Andrea and I had to drag several long plastic sheets (used to keep plants warm) out of the mud, spread them out, and rinse them off. We ended the day tired, muddy, and wet, but when I got home, I couldn't have been happier. After all these years, it felt good to be bringing some of that red clay with me again.

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