Or wholesomeness... When I buy fruits and vegetables locally from a farmers market or a local grower, I feel much better. I am not entirely sure why, but I do. The food tastes better to my tastebuds, as well, while filling me with a deeper satisfaction
than I could get were I to cook with vegetables with unknown origins from my local supermarkets.
It's possible it's all a placebo effect - kind of like when we go camping and prepare an evening meal. We were out all day having fun, had simple sandwiches and crisps for lunch with a can of soda or a bottle of lemonade or tea, and we come back to the
site and cook up a hot and delicious meal. I made a pot of clam chowder during one of last year's camping trips from local ingredients we had purchased, and clams we dug up ourselves from the sandy surf of an Oregon beach. I can't tell you how delicious that
soup was! But a couple of months later, long after we had returned from camping, I made the same soup in my home on my stove with the same kind of ingredients, and the soup was only "Okay." Well, it was delicious, but it lacked the luster of that first vat
and certainly didn't satisfy my soul the way it did on that camping trip.
Anyway, before I go into a tangent, I have recently discovered that the only ingestibles (food) more satisfying than that which comes from my own garden is food that came from my proverbial neighbor's garden. When something comes from a local grower, ranging
from heirloom tomatoes all the way to squashes and everything in between, I get a sort of tingling sensation in my soul, for lack of a better explanation. This tingling is the surge of satisfaction I get from knowing the "dirt of my land," as well as the efforts
of my loosely-nearby neighbors, went into growing, nurturing and harvesting these local commodities.
All of these things culminate to give my palette a more enjoyable experience. Things taste better, and I do not have this constant, uneducated worry about the much talked-about GMO fears or chemical spraying or pesticides and etc.
I write this today because, in my own humble option, there is indeed a "Wholeness" in this form of eating. I am not the most educated man on the planet, or even in my local circles. But I like to think I have some grasp, however tentative, on the basics
of our common economy. Knowing that my money, when I purchase local goods from a local vendor, goes into the pockets of said local vendor, that vendor's wealth is increased. Much of that money may be used to pay other local vendors that helped to supply him/her
with their ability to provide me with the goods that I required, and from there a cascade effect is created. My local currency is distributed outward in an ever-reaching ripple effect, where the most prominently affected person is the original vendor who,
hopefully, put their heart and soul into the goods and/or services I required of them that they provided to me. That currency they get to keep for their own needs/wants perhaps goes into the pockets of other local vendors so that they, as people like you and
I, can gain what they need. From this endless cycle of exchange, a strong, local circle is crafted, and from this first circle, other circles are created, and we can see these circles come together to form links and bonds that bring us together as a society
through the common bond of need, desire and community. In this is created, ideally, a wholesome "Wholeness" we get to experience.
And from all of this knowledge, when I make a pot of stewed tomatoes and zucchini with fresh locally harvested veggies and herbs, my soul is satisfied by this "Wholeness." Perhaps I don't often ponder where my 10 dollars went to and how it's helping people
live their lives in our community, but the general feelings of goodness are there within me, and it feels good to focus on the positive for a change.