On Tuesday afternoon I worked on the farm in place of Orientation Year. I’d been looking forward to working on the farm because it’s the last land workshop I had to visit and even though it smells like dozens of animals use it as a toilet (because they do) I quite enjoyed myself.
Much like the garden, the farm either has too much work to do or not enough. However certain tasks, like mucking out the pigs’ pen and milking the cows, can always be counted on to provide work. Farmers during this time of year regularly start work before everyone else starts work and finish after everyone else finishes work, as well. When I walked up to Sunny Valley Barn as the cows and heifers had already been fetched from the fields. The cows as a group are brought in to be milked twice a day, but not every cow gets milked when they are brought in.
I helped muck out the pigs’ pen, carting wheelbarrows of used bedding away to a pile outside the barn. I also helped milk. The cow pictured, Amy, is the one I milked. I hadn’t realized how much of a workout it is for your arms and eventually Rose came and relieved me. Rose is probably five times faster than me at milking, and she finished milking Amy after she had milked at least one other cow. Needless to say I was quite amazed.
After milking I was supposed to help direct the cows out to the fields behind Undina and Hickory, but the other two that were directing the cows were on bikes. I ended up being the slowest member of the entire group, including the cows. Despite the smell (I took a shower after getting home because I realized how intensely bad I smelled once I was outside the barn) I enjoyed working on the farm. I want to do another day at the farm because I want to see how they make cheese and quark.