Ann lives with her son, Barry. While the two of them work to stretch their food budget through Barry’s income & Ann’s backyard gardening and canning, there are times when hunger catches up with them.
1. Searching for Tomorrow
Ann: My potatoes, my beans, my corn, pretty much everything that I grow now comes out of containers. Some rotten stones or whatever, just break up everything and put it in the bottom and then put the soil in it on top of them, and then put your potatoes in them. This potatoes can give you at least, I would say, five different plants. I grew sweet potatoes. These sweet potatoes came out of my back yard. Radishes, cabbage and lettuce. Different kinds of lettuce. You can pretty much get a whole salad out of a cinder block. And everything I grow out there grows in a container. I got great big flower pots. I grow egg plants, peppers, tomatoes. I grow a variety of tomatoes. And those cinder blocks down on the side, I’ve got rosemary, I’ve got thyme, I’ve got parsley. I grow my papers. But every year I also want to grow something different. I want to see if it happens!
2. Backyard Bounty
Ann: The hurt of hunger, when open up the refrigerator, there’s nothing there. Maybe water. Maybe the end pieces of bread. Hunger is when you open up the pantry and you’ve got a can of tomato paste and you’ve got nothing to put it on. Hunger is when your child comes up to you and says, “Mommy, Daddy, I’m hungry.” The kid doesn’t know that these items, the refrigerator and the pantry and wherever you might store your food, the cabinet. . . the child does not know that these places are empty. There’s nothing in there.
3. The Hurt of Hunger
Ann: Hunger is not good. It’s not a good feeling. Um, hunger is not elective. You don’t elect to be hungry. Hunger is something that happens to you and most often, bad hunger, severe hunger, and I don’t mean hunger that is in the third world country, is something that is a result of not having access to a meal. Once your stomach is full, then your brain is full. You can think, you can dream one size too big. You can always see the tomorrows, you can always see the horizons, you can always see the light at the end of the tunnel, as long as you have something. But as long as you have access to food to eat, then hunger is not the monster that you would think it is. But if you don’t have access, it can be a pretty bad — it can be a really scary experience.