DAY 45 - SOME REST AT AN ORGANIC FARM

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Day 45 - Bayside, CA - 2315 km

What do you do if you love travelling and meeting new people, but you can’t because you have a job, a family or other things that keep you in one place? Exactly, you sign up on Warmshowers.org and let bicycle travellers visit you. This is a shout out to all the great hosts I stayed with so far. People that meet the world by staying at home.

Albert (in red shirt) has been cycling a fair bit through the US and Mexico, but he currently owns an organic farm and there is not much time left for travelling at the moment. But he opened up his place for cyclist, who can camp on his property or stay in one of the cabins, at no charge. There’s Josh and Eve, cycling north together. He’s from Brazil, she from California. While we have a chat in the garden, among the flowers and fresh strawberries, gazed at by chickens and a few cows, Rafael comes pedalling on the driveway. I met him a few days ago along the coast. Then later in the evening Josh and Katie from Massachusetts also arrive by surprise. We have all met on the road or ona campsite before. Cycling the coastal highway 101 is a popular route in summer. Almost everyday I meet cyclists packed for a long haul, from north to sound, following the direction of the wind. Except Jose, he’s coming the south, Argentina, and he complains about the wind. 

 
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Cass, one of the workers on the farm shows me around on the property. At the foot of the hill is a yurt where guests can stay. then a walking trail goes up under the big trees. Under an old grown redwood tree is an outdoor shower, with view on the valley. Next to it a dry toilet, which smells like chocolate! After you’ve done your business you pour a scoop a cacao shells through the hole which covers the smell. Further up on the hill is another little cabin where I can sleep. Just a wooden shed on poles with a platform to put an air matrass on. The outdoor shower is amazing, beats all luxury hotels. Hot water on your back with the cold breeze from the sea in your face and a view over the valley. It’s priceless. 

Next to the garden is the barn and kitchen, with a little shop where local people can buy fresh milk, eggs and vegetables from the garden. The shop is unattended. You come in, stock up, write your purchases in the book and leave your payment in a safe. In the evening we cook a meal from vegetables from the garden. Fresh elephant garlic, courgettes, eggs, butter and milk. A hole in the ground serves as a barbecue.

 
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Albert (red shirt) is a real farmer. Works all day, doesn’t talk much and lets travellers do their thing, making sure everything works on the farm and there is fresh milk in the morning for his guests. It’s extremely hospitable. Giving something without expecting anything in return, blindlessly trust strangers on your property. That’s the great thing of Warmshowers. It’s a large community where everyone is friends with each other. You’re biking, so you’re cool. Everyone is sort of in it for different reasons. Sometimes just to meet people, to bring some life in your home, learn about bike travelling. Or there are people simple because they want to give something, because they have more than enough for yourself. And I find the same incredibly hosts wherever I come. From Europe, to Iran, to Myanmar, to the US. I feel privileged to be part of this. 

 
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