Friday, November 4, 2011


Cook Farm in Hadley, MA

I felt like a celebrity yesterday.  Well, minus all of the glitz and glamour.  And the fans.  And the paparazzi.  It's just nice to pretend that signing important papers is like handing out my autograph.  It takes away some of the anxiety of committing myself to legal documents.

Yesterday I signed a contract with a real estate agent (the same woman who has been accompanying me on house tours in the Stonington area).  The contract is general, but still held a lot of meaning for me.  It states that I cannot purchase a house without her in the next six months, and that she is here to support me in purchasing a house for the next six months.  The second part is really the key.  I have decided to invest my time in pursuing the North Stonington Farm in hopes of putting in an offer in January (I will need about 2 months to complete my business plan and loan application) and closing in early April (it will take another 3 months to process the loan application and nail down all of the details).  It's still a long shot, but I just have a good feeling.

And if I've learned nothing in the past twenty years, it's to trust my instinct.

I feel overwhelmed with everything that needs to come together in the next couple of months before I can make this a reality.  I need to meet with a second group of loan providers (who are unfortunately still without power because of last Saturday's big storm).  I need to finish my Holistic Management homework.  I need to take my soil test to the lab.  I need to develop a concrete business plan, crop plan, and grazing plan.  I need to figure out a mess of financial information for the loan application.  I need to find a job to supplement my farm income the first couple of years (another source of yesterday's "autographs" was submitting letters of interest and resumes to some local businesses).  I need to make sure all of the key investors and decision makers are on the same page.  It's a lot, but it's doable.  

And in the back of my mind, I still need to have a PLAN B, in case this doesn't work out.  I think that will come a little later, after I've indulged in the fantasy of making this farm my own enough to develop a real plan.

I still can't believe this is actually happening.  

I better work on perfecting my autograph, because I have a feeling I'll be signing a lot of important paperwork in the next few weeks.

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