the work

14Aug12

I haven’t written about AZ’s job yet. I mean, aside from the fact that I would have ventured almost anywhere at any time, AZ’s job is the main reason we are here. AZ is much more conservative when it comes to picking up and moving our life… he had to have a JOB to go to, with benefits and security and such. Three kids can really kill your sense of adventure.

The cool part is that the job is fantastic. Challenging for sure… and demanding and stressful, but really inspiring and interesting. I think he feels both daunted by the workload and so very lucky at the same time. We might not get to see him much.

CIAT is the Spanish acronym for the International Center for Tropical Agriculture. This is a research centre focused on improving health and reducing poverty as it relates to agriculture in the tropics. CIAT preserves the largest and most diverse collection of beans, cassava and forages in the world (33,000 varieties of beans alone?!). They also manage a number of projects around the world (in tropical countries) tackling problems associated with climate change, agrobiodiversity and the loss of agricultural landscapes. Way beyond me really, but I thought all of you locavores and urban farmers in Vancouver would appreciate this, right? CIAT employs bean breeders and soil scientists and PhDs in food security and the environmental outcomes of land use, among many other specialties.

Bean display (not the real collection):

AZ has been brought in as a science-oriented fundraising expert of sorts… to help CIAT and scientists get word out about how important this work is. I have a renewed interest in beans. And forages, in case you didn’t know (which I did not), are the crops the cows eat.

Visiting baby cassava:

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