2013 marks my first foray into the world of community supported agriculture (CSA). Luckily, I live in San Francisco, the mecca of such activities. I thought joining a CSA would be a good idea based on a few reasons.
One, receiving weekly deliveries of food for the week on my doorstep cuts out a trip to the grocery store. I actually enjoy trips to the grocery store, but decided with my medical school schedule that I like real runs more than grocery store runs.
Two, the weekly deliveries of food removes a lot of decision-making from my daily life. I don't plan meals based on the infinite amount of ingredients at the store, instead I receive my food supply in the box, with recipes included. Doctors, even those still in training, make hundreds of decisions every day, many very small, but still using the decision-making parts of our brains. Decision fatigue is a real thing. I just became less decision fatigued.
Three, rutabegas delivered? I cook rutabegas. Doesn't matter that I didn't know what a rutabega looked like until I googled it. I have an easy recipe and 2lbs of rutabegas- it will be done. I like the fact that being part of a CSA forces me to try new things on a regular basis. I consider this a good thing. Change is good, a few years ago I wrote a post about inertia, and how it slowly and steadily overtakes us. I could detail perfectly my Trader Joes run, what I choose in the vegetable area, my route down the isles, and thus my fridge and food stay strikingly similar week to week. Don't get me wrong, I still love my Trader Joes, and will definitely continue to go there as needed. My new weekly CSA delivery is a system that fights against this inertia and builds in change to my week.
Four, my CSA box teaches me what fruits and vegetables grow in different seasons. I've been enjoying Farmer's Markets for several years now, you learn to appreciate the revolving cycle of food during the year. When summer rolls around my excitement grows for the plentiful amounts of zucchini and peaches. As winter nears, my stomach rumbles for sweet potatoes. On a psychological level, I find there is something good for the soul about the sensory perception of time passing. California doesn't really have seasons, so sometimes you can't really feel the change in time. It's why I put away my summer clothes in the fall, and am happy to bring out my rain boots. I like that my food expresses to me the change in seasons and a CSA helps with this.
In the end, I sorted through the vast numbers of CSAs in the Bay Area and decided to try LolaBee's Harvest. Lolabee's works as an online store that sends a weekly harvest box, a smorgasbord of fruits and vegetables, and also allows you to add other locally grown items to your order including meats, cheeses, eggs, herbs and other fruits and vegetables as you wish. Keep you posted!