June means that the Food Not Bombs Free Skool has been in operation one whole month. By my count, about 14 people have come as students, farmers, and activists to learn here in May, not including the permanent Free Skoolers. So far, people have come as far as Florida, Texas, California, etc., as well as a few locals to be a part of this project.
The beginning of the month included our Free Skool Welcome Day event in downtown Taos, the installation of our water pump, the construction of our ramada, and a speedy expansion of our garden beds in preparation for spring. In between lots and lots of farmwork we held classes on non-violent social change and puppetry.
Towards the middle of the month, as some of the first students went on their way and were gradually replaced, we also diversified our classes quite a bit and prepared for more public activity. Classes included quilting, composting, stilt-walking, and a class on creative, team-building games, taught by a FNB activist from Austin.
As our first month drew closer to ending, our farm became a new home for lots and lots of seedlings, including cabbage, chickpeas, sunflowers, potatos, onions, plum trees, and strawberry and raspberry plants, and that’s just to name a few.
Taos food activists also put a nice little event against the GMO food industry that ended at Taos Food Not Bombs. Strangely, the very next weekend some people from the New Mexico Environment Department came to visit TFNB. I am not exactly sure what they actually do to help the environment in this state because all they did was insist that we need a permit to share food and literature. What a funny thing to hear this in such a tiny, progressive town after hearing mouthpieces of brutal police gangs say much the same thing for years in poverty-wracked major metropolitian areas. Taos USED to be one of the few places the specter of police harassment didn’t hang over us, but at least it is something we are used to dealing with.
Coming up next for the Free Skool: Classes on clicktivism, video editing, a special presentation on indigenous resistance in the Four Corners, more quilting, and lots more. Our first official field trip is coming up as well as a nearby Earth First! gathering that we hope to get to.
Finally, a reminder that we’re still accepting students all summer long, and we need all you special people to keep coming through to keep things interesting! Come to learn, take in the spectacular local landscape, teach a few classes of your own, and learn together with all of us how Food Not Bombs can continue to be a strong movement for lasting social change.