Our four-year-old grandson does his part to herd the cattle down the road by waving his cap in order to encourage them along. His dad takes a bit more active approach as he runs along behind the critters!

Saturday, February 18, 2012

How Tired Farmers Take a Walk

I started to entitle this post "How Tired OLD Farmers Take a Walk."  But then I decided to stop calling myself old, even if it is kind of true.  

John was sitting in his chair, feet propped up; eating a peanut butter/chocolate cookie from a batch given us by a friend. K-State is playing basketball this afternoon and he was enjoying a few minutes of after lunch  respite before heading back out to do some work.  I appeared at his side wearing sweats and walking shoes; and poked him in the ribs.  "Let's go for a walk."  

He was not enthusiastic.  

I said, "Fine, sit there and eat a cookie that I can't have because of my cholesterol, I'll go by myself."  And off I went.  

When I reached the top of the hill across from our house I heard John yelling, "I'm coming, I'm coming!" Grinning, I turned and went back down the hill to meet him.  

When we reached the top of the hill once more, we were both puffing like steam engines. This caused us to draw different conclusions about the need for exercise: 

John:  See how much trouble this is?  

Linda:  See how much we need to exercise? 

I crossed through the fence that goes into the wheat field up on the hill, planning to walk along the south side of the tree line in order to be sheltered from the wind.  I made it through the strands of barbed wire, then turned and looked back at John. I was startled to see him lying, spread eagled on the ground. Annie, our dog, ran over and placed her head on his shoulder.  Outnumbered, I clambered back over the fence and joined them (after making sure John didn't need CPR). The sky was blue, and we were sheltered from the breeze.  In unison we all three heaved a contented sigh. 
Not a bad way to take an afternoon walk, back on the farm! 

Monday, February 13, 2012

Busy Winter Days

The past few weeks we've spent our mornings feeding cattle. Annie (our dog) insists on riding in back even when the days turn bitter, which hasn't happened but a couple of times this winter. My normally conservative husband actually was considering buying her one of those expensive doggy coats but in an uncharacteristic role change, I talked him out of it, telling him she could stay at home when the days are too cold. But she howls so heart brokenly when she is left behind that he rarely leaves her. One day when I was staying at home because it was so cold, I insisted that Annie ride in the cab. John said she was so unhappy that he finally stopped the truck and let her get in back. 
Annie's muzzle turned white when she was still young--just 2 or 3.  She's about seven years old now. 
 We've attended the cattle sale several times but prices have gone high and we haven't bought the past couple of weeks. This photo is from the sale barn at the livestock auction we've been attending weekly:  
As I wrote in a previous post, I felt validated by the sale barn staff when I was given my very own "Eat Beef" farm cap. John says I completed the acceptance phase when I fell asleep during the cattle sale a week ago; if you really belong there you are comfortable enough to drift off (?).  It seems one of his pasttimes when he's not interested in the cattle being run through the ring is to count how many folks have fallen asleep. On this day it was just two fellows that were probably both over 80--and me. 

I alienated most of my Facebook friends when I posted that, in this unusually mild winter, I longed for just a little bit of snow.  Wow that struck a nerve.  I had to apologize and everything.  But this morning when there were two inches of snow on the ground, I'm afraid I enjoyed my morning walk even more than usual. The person who was the most vexed with me was my husband, Farmer John, who suspected me of actually praying for the snowfall and does NOT like feeding cattle when there is wet and icy white stuff on the ground, imagine that.  

Morning walk 2/13/12.  It was misting and so I had my hat pulled down over my sunglasses. Guess I need one of those stocking caps with a bill!