Ch 9: Daily Farm Life After Returning from Interstellar

Dried Bamboo Shoots

There are still two days before the land is fully turned over. After it’s turned over, it needs to be divided into plots for each vegetable bed, making it easier for management and irrigation. Before that, Su Mu prepares the sweet potato field in the vegetable garden to serve as a seedbed.

Mother Su also gets busy. In the past, the land at home was small, and her husband could manage it all by himself. She didn’t need to get involved at all. Apart from taking care of household chores every day, she would spend her time chatting and playing cards with her familiar sisters. But over time, most of them moved into the city, and they couldn’t even gather enough players for a game of cards.

Now, things are different. With her daughter back, she finally has a role to play.

“Mom, you’ve managed the vegetable garden really well. The harvest from these two plots of sweet potatoes must be over five hundred pounds, right?” Just the vines alone have been gathered into several bundles. Su Mu selects the sturdy root stems and leaves them behind. Once the seedlings are transplanted into the ground, she’ll plant these roots. The rest will be piled outside the yard to feed the chickens.

Hearing her daughter’s praise, Mother Su keeps smiling proudly and says, “Of course, my farming skills are no joke. It’s just that your dad wouldn’t let me work in the fields. Otherwise, our yields would definitely be even higher.”

Su Mu is taken aback by this unexpected input and is left speechless. He mumbles, “Then I can’t let you work so hard with me.”

Mother Su immediately becomes anxious upon hearing this. She had finally found a way to pass the time, so how could she just be told not to do it?

“Dear, you can’t follow your dad’s lead. I’m not a fragile doll, afraid of getting knocked around. Besides, I know your dad means well. When I gave birth to you, it was during a famine. I didn’t have proper postpartum care and ended up with postpartum issues. No matter how hot it was, my hands and feet were always icy cold. But being alone at home makes me really restless. And, working up a sweat through labor is actually good for the body.”

Su Mu straightens up and looks at his hardworking mother. He whispers, “But won’t Dad blame me? If he agrees, I have no objections.”

“He wouldn’t dare! He’s such a traditionalist. Really, I’ve been taking care of myself for so many years. I’m perfectly fine now. But he keeps saying what I can and cannot do. Later, I’ll talk to him about it.”

Mother and daughter spend half an hour tidying up the two plots of land. The soil in the garden is loose, and the seedbed doesn’t require deep plowing. They just need to even out the ground with a hoe and remove any large clumps of dirt.

Two plots of land are not enough to cultivate all the seedlings for the twenty acres of land. So, they decide to cultivate a few varieties first and use a corner of the already prepared large field to grow the rest of the seedlings.

Nurturing the seedlings is meticulous work, and it takes them two days to complete it all.

Su Mu reveals a bit of his energy, estimating that the seedlings will be ready for transplanting in about six or seven days.

During this time, the land has been plowed several times and leveled, waiting for the seedlings to grow.

The African Violet fairy was born during a light rain. Unlike the noble aura of the Orchid fairy, it’s round and cute, with a particularly silly and lovable smile—a type that seems easy to pick on.

Although normal people can’t see the existence of fairies, animals can. Big Orange only feels that there’s something on top of its head, constantly tugging at its ears, making it feel incredibly itchy.

It runs swiftly, brushes against the grass, and rubs against trees, trying to shake it off. However, no matter how it shakes, it can’t get rid of it. Instead, it ends up making itself look extremely messy.

On the rainy day, everyone stayed indoors and didn’t go out.

Mother Su peeled bamboo shoots and scolded Big Orange, “You’re running around all dirty. I don’t have time to give you a bath.”

Big Orange looked pitiful and whimpered, “Woof woof woof,” as if saying, “Master, I’m being bullied! Why are you scolding me?” It tried to rub against its female owner, but she pushed it away without mercy.

Feeling truly sad now, its round eyes gradually became watery. It seemed like any moment, tears would fall.

Su Mu playfully patted its head and said to the African Violet , “Alright, alright, Big Orange knows it’s wrong. The flower seedlings under the fence have sprouted. Go take a look.”

The African Violet fairy gave Big Orange’s head another firm pat and said angrily, “I’ll spare you this time!” Then it turned to its owner with a good-natured smile, “Thank you, Master.”

Su Mu waved her hand. Since she brought them into this world, she had an obligation to let them realize their potential. Ultimately, it’s about mutual benefit.

Father Su and mother Su weren’t puzzled by their daughter’s seemingly random remarks; they each continued with their tasks.

Father Su was arranging the farming tools. In a couple of days, the seedlings would be ready for transplanting. He needed to inspect the small hoe and shovel first. As the saying goes, “A worker must first sharpen his tools.” It wouldn’t be good if the tools broke halfway through. That would be a joke; if a farmer can’t even take care of the tools they use to eat, what can they do?

“Mom, what are you using these bamboo shoots for? What’s the purpose? And how can you dry them in bad weather?” Su Mu washed her hands and helped her mother peel the bamboo shoots.

The bamboo shoots have aged a bit, so they need to carefully trim away the aging parts.

“We’re making pickled bamboo shoots. We’ve almost finished the ones we made in previous years.” The pickled bamboo shoots can last for many years without spoiling. However, the sourness increases with time. When you want to eat them, you have to rub off some of the sourness with saltwater, then blanch them in boiling water for a few minutes to reduce the taste.

“Why are we also drying bamboo shoots at home?” Su Mu particularly likes dishes made with dried bamboo shoots, such as sautéed with preserved pork, sausages, or stewed with spare ribs.

“We still have some dried bamboo shoots at home, though not many. Why? Are you craving them? Well, let’s see if the weather cooperates. If the sun comes out tomorrow, we can dry some.”

Su Mu suddenly looks forward to the sun shining as promised. Now that she knows where the dried bamboo shoots are stored, she happily goes to soak bamboo shoots.

Meat supplies at home are running low, and after days of eating chicken, duck, and fish, she decides to go to the county town for some shopping.

But going to town presents a big problem: transportation. The small county market takes place on the 2nd, 5th, and 8th days of the lunar calendar. Today is the 16th day of the third lunar month, not a market day. It would be difficult to find a ride to the county town.

There is a small three-wheeled vehicle with a roof at home, but Father Su isn’t comfortable with his daughter traveling alone. Therefore, Su Mu can only ask her father to drive her.

The idea of buying a car crosses her mind. She earned a reward of one million for helping Wei Liu with the orchids, and she used her savings to pay for the land lease. She hasn’t touched the one million yet. Money sitting in an account is stagnant, so it might be better to buy a car for future convenience.

After arriving in the county town, she bought some pork and spare ribs. Passing by a beef stall, she noticed that the beef looked good, so she also bought a few pounds of beef.

Su Mu also wanted to buy some fruits. Her sense of taste was sensitive, and ordinary fruits didn’t meet her standards. Eventually, she found a stall run by an elderly lady. The fruits might not look great, but they were organic and tasted sweet.

Translated on ho lo lo novels dot com.

That evening, Su Mu finally got to enjoy her desired dishes—stir-fried bamboo shoots with meat and stewed bamboo shoots with spare ribs. She also finished the remaining dried bamboo shoots at home.

The bamboo shoots absorbed the broth, retaining a meaty flavor. The long cooking time didn’t compromise their texture; they remained both tender and crisp. Su Mu ate with her head down.

After quitting her job and returning to her hometown, her social media was filled with scenic pictures of the village and food photos. This made the urban “workaholics” feel bitter.

Brother: “Late-night poison, drag her out! I really want to eat Mom’s cooking!”

Sister-in-law: “Upstairs, how about we all go back home for the May holiday?”

Wei Liu: “Su Mu, bring me along! Mu Mu, I have two friends who also want to visit the countryside. Can you host them? Money is not a problem!”

Chen Guo: “Sister, have you ever considered the feelings of us overworked employees? We not only endure our bosses’ mental torment but also get tortured by your delicious food. You need to send me some as compensation.”

Su Mu lay in bed, chuckling at these comments. What made her the happiest was that while they were working hard, she was already enjoying a leisurely retirement life.

Indeed, the joy of having a green thumb is beyond the imagination of ordinary people.

She replied to each comment.

“Dried bamboo shoots are all gone.”

“Come back, Mom can feed you two with different meals every day. Besides, sister-in-law, we haven’t seen each other in a long time. I miss you.”

When it came to Wei Liu, she hesitated. It seemed like he wasn’t concerned about the money, but hosting guests could be troublesome. Yet he’s her own brother’s boss, and it wouldn’t be good to refuse.

At that moment, her door was knocked. She turned and said, “The door’s not locked, come in.”

It was her mother, who waved her phone and showed the content of her social media feed.

Sitting by her daughter’s bed, Mother Su smiled and said, “Help me reply to Wei Liu. Tell him he’s welcome to come and stay for a few days, free of charge.”

Su Mu didn’t expect Wei Liu to have her mother’s WeChat too. Well, even if she wanted to refuse now, it wasn’t possible.

She nodded and said, “Alright, I’ll reply to him.”

After getting the confirmation, Mother Su returned to her room. Xiao Wei looked promising, and her son mentioned that he didn’t have a girlfriend yet. He lived a simple life. Mother Su began to think that he might be a good match for her daughter, though his family background was a bit prominent. But their own daughter was also outstanding.

Ever since her daughter mentioned returning to the village for farming, Mother Su had been most concerned about her marriage. The local young men weren’t quite suitable. Staying in the village didn’t provide opportunities to interact with high-quality young men from outside. Now that Xiao Wei had shown up, she couldn’t let this chance slip by.

Su Mu didn’t think so much. She replied as her mother had instructed: “You’re welcome to come and play anytime. My mom says no charge, so feel free to come.”

Then she replied to Chen Guo: “My bad! Sending isn’t an option now. How about some dried bamboo shoots? But you’ll have to wait a few days. We’re starting to dry a new batch tomorrow. Do you have a holiday for May 1st? Come visit me?”

The rest were acquaintances she wasn’t particularly close to. She didn’t have the patience to reply to each one, so she put her phone down and fell asleep.

The next morning, Su Mu woke up early and rushed outside. She saw clear skies and grinned.

Mother Su shook her head. This child, even when she was little, never focused on her meals. Why is she so obsessed with food now?

Seeing that her mother was ready, Su Mu hurriedly said, “Mom, wait for me, I’m coming too!” Dried bamboo shoots were what she wanted to eat, and she couldn’t let her mom do all the work alone.

She got ready as quickly as possible, and the two of them headed to the bamboo grove together.

However, as soon as Su Mu stepped out of the door, the Orchid fairy came back from the mountain, holding a clump of golden orchids in its mouth.



  1. Elli says:

    Thanks for the update (⁠◍⁠•⁠ᴗ⁠•⁠◍⁠)

  2. Elli says:

    This is why I have a love/hate relationship with cooking genres, especially since I’m a foodie

    1. Thingyan says:

      LOL I know what you mean. That’s why I picked up food novels only pretty much. At the same time, I suffer from all these food porn :’)

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