The Idyllic Countryside

It’s 11:53 on a Saturday night, and I’m waiting for the milkers to finish milking pen 4 so the newest mother cow can be milked. Then, I can feed her calf, and go home to bed.

Truth be told, I’m not normally working at this hour. Tonight about 7:00 I could see this cow would calve tonight, and I knew I should come back to check things and feed the baby.

There is always work at the farm. No matter the hour, the weather, or the holiday. But usually once I’ve gone home for the day then things can wait until tomorrow. The exception is if I see a cow in labor as I’m leaving. {Or the dreaded emergency phone call.} Then I’ve got to make sure someone comes back to check on the cow and coming calf.

It’s glamorous I tell you — this life on the farm.

I say that with truth and — I admit — a touch of irony in my words.

Fields of ripening grain rippling in a late summer breeze and sleek cows grazing at pasture are beautiful and idyllic in their simplicity. These images can make even the most devout city-dwellers long for “the simple life.”


But what is the simple life?

Is it a sunburned nose and shoulders from a full day’s work in the heat? Is it frostbite on toes or fingers from hours in the Minnesota cold?

Maybe it’s being covered in dirt, grime, and manure from a day cleaning out barn?

Perhaps it’s more about sunsets behind a rural backdrop?

Maybe it’s the sweet smells of hay and silage mixed with strong coffee and fresh baked bread?

I know that the simple life is all these things. It may not be as postcard perfect as life in the country is supposed to be. It can be dirty, sweaty, bloody, and frustrating. It can also be rewarding, peaceful, and tender.

But to me, more than anything else — it just feels like home.

And now, the milk is ready, and I can go feed baby. It’s a girl, by the way. I hope she eats well. Happy Saturday night, or I should say Sunday morning, from Minnesota.


About Lisa

Hi, I'm Lisa. Dairy farmer's wife and Minnesotan to the core, I write about rural farm life, running down country roads, and the food, faith, and family that bind everything together. Follow along on my journey.
This entry was posted in Agriculture ( in general), Cows and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to The Idyllic Countryside

  1. Terzah says:

    Very nice writing, Lisa!

  2. Jena says:

    Lovely post. I think anything can look like the simple life through the eyes of someone whose not living that life; and that’s okay. I sometimes wonder what it would be like to work on a shrimp boat – They go out every evening before sunset, and they get to watch the sunset over the gulf, almost every night. That must be amazing. But then, being a shrimper is kind of cool, but they go out in bad weather, and the cold. Not Minnesota cold, but Florida cold. They work weird hours, and are out all night. I suppose it’s dangerous on a bad night.

    I hope you got to sleep in a little on Sunday.

    • Lisa says:

      The shrimp boat sounds like quite the job! The hours would be rough though. I think most things really do have their perks & challenges, as you say.

  3. Great writing! There is nothing better than a farm when all is quiet, save for the breath and rustling of the animals.

  4. Hey hi thanks for sharing this ..I loved reading this post

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