Tuesday, August 09, 2005


I was reading one of my regular blogs where the writer was talking about growing up near a farm and being friends with the family that owned/worked the farm. It brought back memories of my childhood.

I was fortunate to live on 2 farms for periods while I was growing up. The first was in the county where I am now teaching. I was 7 years old then. We lived there for a year. We had chickens and a horse. What more could a boy want?

The second was a farm where I lived from my high school sophomore year til I got married after a year of college. There we had cows and a horse. My father was an electrician that did some farming. We had a football field sized garden. It was 300 ft x 150 ft. I worked the garden, feed the cows, dug fence post holes, cleared tree lines, hauled hay, hauled water, and went to school.

I remember an incident in particular, a cow died in birthing. Her calf was a bull. We fed the calf with a bucket that had a nipple attached to the side at the bottom. I was trying to feed him one very hot summer day in the swelter of the barn. I decided to take him up the hill to the house. In the garage, it was cooler.

I put him across my shoulders and away I went. I trudged up the hill to the house. It was about 200 yards. I fed him and then tossed him over my shoulder and back to the barn we went. Half way, I felt something hot and wet running down my back. Without thinking (who does .. In a situation like that) I looked over and caught the smell of fresh bull urine. I gagged. I puked. There I was, in the middle of the field, holding down the calf, and not holding down anything else. I was 16 years old. To this day, strong odors can cause the gag reflex.

When Audrey (now 25) was a baby, I would change her diapers with a cloth diaper tied across my face like the old style bandits in old westerns. I can see that coming out in a therapy session some day.

I love that memory.

No comments: