Hi, My name is Sarah. I want to be a farmer. I also want to be a hobo, the part of being a hobo that travels freely and works in exchange for food and lodging. Travel comes naturally to me, but until I started this adventure, I’d never been on a farm. To learn farming skills I’m spending two years traveling around the US volunteering on farms through an organization called WWOOF, World-Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms. In exchange for farm labor, I get a place to sleep, meals, and, most importantly, an education in organic farming. In between farming stints, I’m traveling around the US visiting National Parks. Each park is distinctive, and they are wonderful places to meditate and study the natural world. On June 30th, 2013, I quit my reasonably lucrative teaching job and handed in the keys to my apartment in Seattle. I’m free.
I’ve now WWOOFed on twenty-one farms across the US. I’ve milked goats, learned how to make a variety of cheeses, spun wool from the farm’s sheep to make yarn, harvested vegetables I hadn’t heard of, and, most importantly, met people who share my passion for farming. I’ve also driven across country three times and gained a deeper knowledge of the history of the US through visiting National Park units. I’ve visited Civil War battlefields, ancient Native American sites, walked in the footsteps of the Founding Fathers, and, of course, hiked in the parks that preserve the country’s natural wonders. I spent last winter and spring enjoying the perks of living in Seattle. On June 1st, 2015 I started WWOOFing on farms on the Olympic Peninsula in Washington. In July I headed down to northern California to experience their drought and learn about making wine and more about homesteading. After returning to Seattle in the fall, I started practicing with fermentation. The kitchen is filled with kombucha, hard cider, sourdough starter, and yogurt. Seattle also offers the opportunity to participate in a number of music groups where I’m developing my ukulele and singing skills. Eventually I’ll begin a land search. I’m still not sure where I’d like to live. That’s become a bigger question than I expected.
Interested in WWOOFing? I’ve written a guidebook for people who are planning to WWOOF. It will walk you through the planning stages and has tips on making your WWOOFing adventure a big success! You can order it here