Who called Road trip? We did, last week, we took a road trip to North Dakota to visit Navar’s brother and sister-in-law and their three small kids. Lots of fun we’ve been wanting to check out their small dairy farm for the last few years. Finally, we had a moment to jump in the car and check things out. Lots and lots of fun we even milked a few cows. I have a new appreciation for where milk comes from and how much hard work it can be. I had a small worry that I would lose a shoe in a steamy cow pie. I think in some ways I’m a bit of a girly girl, I like sparkles and cupcake sprinkles. I like nature, I just don’t want too much on my clothes or shoes.
When I stepped down just outside the calves’s pen, to bottle feed a calf, there was an area covered with straw. Underneath the straw was lots of cow pee and poo, one foot slowly began to sink into and over my shoe. My eyes must have gotten pretty wide because everyone asked me “Are you Ok?” The look on my face probably looked like a potential melt down. I dug deep not wanting to be too much like a city slicker and said ” I’m fine” and laughed it off.
The next day they offered me a pair of muck boots to wear, plastic boots that go up to the knee I gratefully excepted. There were so many things about visiting the farm that I loved. The giant dark brown wooden table that could easily fit ten people around it. Eating dinner there twice, handing plates back and forth. The home-made bread and the beautiful home-made rhubarb pie with ice cream. Going out with the kids to gather fresh eggs. Seeing two of the cats stretched out sleeping in the chicken coup a safe place to sleep away from the overly excitable new puppy. The other dog an older very friendly German Shepherd quietly in charge of the farm. He would help to round-up the cows he was such a good dog. I also loved the moment late into the evening, everyone tired from milking cows, seeing the lady of the house putting out a flat pan of fresh cows milk for the cats. I tried to take a picture of this moment, but the light was too dim and I was too tired to think to use my flash. I was hoping to share this image with you, but I only have the words.
In the morning, after having milked the cows late into the night, the rooster begins to crow as the bright morning light streams through the window without curtains. Navar asks me where the snooze alarm is on the rooster? It was a war of wills as I refused to jump out of bed the rooster relentless in his cock a doodle doo’s after a good twenty minutes I buckled and set my tired feet on the floor to find out where the coffee was. No coffee tea drinkers, I was so glad the impulse to buy dried coffee packets before our trip. I grabbed a cup of hot water and joyously put the dried coffee into the cup. Grabbing a piece of home-made bread and peanut butter and having a couple of cups of joe.
I knew the first order of the day was to go out to milk cows. Navar comes into the kitchen sweaty and breathless and says “You just missed it 5 calves broke loose from the barn and I was out chasing them. I got one by the tail.” I wish I could have seen that I’m sure that would have made a great YouTube video. Never a dull moment on the farm is my guess. Navar’s sister-in-law who is pregnant and two weeks from her due date. I was impressed with her get it done work ethic. I know farm work is hard work and there are always chores to be done. They often have farm hands visiting, currently a nice lady from Japan and another a nice lady from Namibia, both learning about the dairy business. I was glad to spend time with their kids we had some great moments together taking pictures of the chickens and drawing and simply chatting it will be one of those trips that I will always remember very fondly.