The Last Week…

Carolyn, Emilie, and Becca on Larry Newcombe's hay wagon during Hay Days in June
Carolyn, Emilie, and Becca on Larry Newcombe’s hay wagon during Hay Days in June

Carolyn, Becca, and Emilie are finished with their year-long apprenticeship at the end of this week. They are the first group of “apprentices” in recent years, and the first group to be hired on to work three weeks shy of a year.

Saying goodbye to our past interns and apprentices is always both a happy and somber event, but this year seems to be a special mix of both feelings.

Carolyn is like a bright ray of sunshine where ever she walks, and its not just the sun glinting off her blonde head. Throughout the year, she smiled and laughed all the time, and her positive attitude carried her well through the 11 months here at Merck Forest. “I’m not sure, but I’ll figure it out” and “Great job, guys” were two phrases that I would often hear her say. Not to mention, if you want a great lady to lead your education programs from kids to adults, Carolyn is one of the best, and natural, teachers out there.

Becca too has carried such positive enthusiasm to each task that she does. If there was a tricky task, or conflicting ideas over how to tackle a project she would often listen to all points, sometimes relent her own, and sally-forth with the job to be done. More and more as the year progressed, I noticed how she would listen to everyone, but also began to stick to her own guns. Becca is a quiet encourager and leader, kind and persistent. She balances a number of varying qualities, which, for a person interested in the many components of a farm, make her such a beautiful person and a great fit for farming.

Tenacious. Practical. Compassionate. Emilie never failed to amaze me with her ability to eye up a situation and be ready to act on the task. Her practical side served as a good counterweight during times of decision-making. While Emilie has been forthright and always ready to get the ball rolling, she also has shown such deep (com)passion for the chores at hand, and even more for the animals’ welfare. Her love of knowledge and sense of humor will be missed.

We will have a going away party for the ladies at the end of this week, and we wish them well on the next endeavors.