Supposedly my farm is for sale. The doctor informed me I need to slow down. So I have been making plans - a smaller farm? a house on a lake? a house in town and live like a normal person?
I just can't seem to wrap my mind around any of these.
This morning, I went out to help the morning milker Luis, just a bit of training, no going out to the pasture. He is new, and I wanted to show him some tricks for improving production. His wife Nicki told me that there was a cow about to freshen in the pasture, so while Luis got the milker on Lucy, I went out to check. Yup, walking on uneven ground, and I am paying for it now. My knee hurts. Sigh . . .
Anyway, Quattro is about to freshen. I would say two days at minimum, maybe even today. So after milking, Luis and I got her into the nursing pen, filled the tank with water, made sure she had some hay. She is eating, so I would say the birth is at least a half day off, although Quattro is an old hand at this and may well munch on hay while pushing the calf out!
The weather is fantastic today. Sunny, and no wind for the first time in days. I went out to check the chickens, as a few had gotten loose. They followed me back into the pen, and I made sure the gate was secure this time. I will have to show Clay how to secure it so they cannot escape.
So I am imagining living in town. What would I be doing with my time? I have no idea. No chickens? Not getting to watch the birth of another calf? Not seeing the delight in the shareholders' eyes when they see all of the milk they are getting with a fresh cow?
I am a farmer at heart. My main frustration is a lack of time to do such things as travel - I did love my trip to Macedonia last fall. Maybe there is a way to make this work. Having an assistant didn't work out well. She wanted more and more money. Last year more than 100% of my profit from the farm went to pay her salary (yes, I lost money because of that salary she got), and still she wanted more. For my time, I was paid nothing. I took money out of my savings to live. That business model is not sustainable!
I have some new people on board this year, working fewer hours and seeming to get everything done that needs doing. Maybe this will be the year that things work out.
I just do not want to leave this place.