From packers to pickers, to the lucky little scallywags who get to sit in an office all day, there’s a whole lot of jobs us backpackers will do to complete our 88 days farm work for that golden ticket of a second year visa. In my dorm alone we’ve got gals packing goon, broccolini packing, prunes, oranges and Rhi and I stuck in a muddy field (with 1.5 million trees to be precise) weeding, pruning, sniping, packing and counting sticks….
It’s been nearly 4 weeks on the ole farm so I thought I’d give you a little insight into what this little bubble I’m in is like:
Nobody tells you winter in Australia is fucking cold. Wearing 64 layers will become the norm and you may spend all day with frozen fingers or you may have to remove all 64 layers before 9am. One morning it was woolly hat in the AM, cap and suntan lotion in the PM. It’s a crazy world out there folks.
You will stand in a muddy puddle every day, slip and slide, nearly fall face first and your trainers will stay wet all day.
You won’t look cool/sexy/or even alive most of the time, get used to it.
You won’t find an elegant way to get onto the back of a trailer attached to a tractor and you’ll lump on like a bushpig EVERY SINGLE TIME.
High-Vis will become a major part of your life and you won’t even care.
Washing your work clothes once a week will be acceptable because everybody else does it and they will only get dirty again.
If there’s a portaloo near your field you’re lucky, if there’s no mud on the floor or piss on the seat you’re even luckier, if there’s toilet roll it’s a fucking miracle.
People will say how therapeutic, or fun, or how easy the work sounds and you will politely tell them it’s one of the hardest things you’ve ever done in your life whilst trying not to spit in their eye. However pulling out a good weed will be quite satisfying, but will get rather boring after the 912th one.
You will watch and hear people get fired and you will thank your lucky stars you weren’t the person who missed that weed.
You forget the days where you felt clean. Dirt-chic is your new look and It will be everywhere from under your nails, to in your hair and ingrained into your face. Crawling around in the mud to weed and prune trees but preserve your back and knees will be a daily occurrence.
Gender equality will be a thing of the past when they shout “girls job” and you run down your row so fucking fast you get a stitch.
The most beautiful sunrises as far as the eye can see.
But most importantly a wonderful community of people making that working day that little bit sweeter.