My supervisor stumbled across this video below made by a small essential oil selling company in the U.S., Aura Cacia. The video, besides from being short (less than 3 minutes) and informative is shot in the exact location where I schlep down every month or so to take soil, plant and water samples for my graduate research on the impact of patchouli on soil fertility in relation to the project’s nutrient management plan (thrilling stuff). Oddly enough we haven’t heard of this Aura Cacia doing business in Aceh Selatan. We’ll have to track down this farmer, Ishkander, get him to join our cooperative and have him bring his business contacts over!
There is one shot of an obelisk-esque traffic circle and a black-roofed mosque to the side. That’s the same street where the little guest house I stay at is located! It’s a guest house on top and a warung (little coffee/pre-prepared food shop) on the bottom. Perfect for getting a morning cup of coffee and then a late dinner. Or an early dinner, but that usually corresponds with the evening prayer time, Magreb, and I either have to wait while all the shops are closed in observance, or if I’m lucky, get locked in to wait it out and finish my dinner.
Now that you have watched the video. I can share that I too go on crazy roads to get to farmer fields.
And I too visited a traditional distillation unit. This one is a bit more involved than the kettle in the video, but the process is the same. In front of me that you can’t see is a big blue vinyl couch where the distillers relax while waiting for the oil to drip out. The stainless steel kettles designed and manufactured as part of our project is rather more high tech than this, but they’re still at the factory so no pictures yet.
But I’m guessing he doesn’t get the chance to do a science experiment with some very great coworkers who humor my crazy requests to play in the dirt as they see it. Not sure if I’ve already mentioned it, but apparently an adult who voluntarily touches dirt and gets their hands mucky had an unfulfilled childhood. Interesting psychological analysis, but my childhood was full of making mudpies and such.