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From the Farm: Sometimes it's hard to feel the love

November 22, 2013
By Kerry Hoffman , The Journal

I'm not feeling the love this morning.

It's been one of those days where I wonder why in the world I milk cows five days a week. Some mornings are just like that.

I think the cows could sense my lack of enthusiasm and were not afraid to show me what they thought of my attitude.

Article Photos

Kerry Hoffman

It seemed, no a few more cows showed their frustration than usual.

I didn't wake up in an acrimonious mood, but as soon as I stepped foot into the milking parlor, things just went south. We all know what's up and what we consider to be down.

Last fall we constructed a new exit for the cows leaving the milking parlor. Well, let me rephrase that. We started construction; it's not finished.

We have one doorway with no door and another doorway with a plastic-like curtain covering the opening. It was windy Tuesday evening, so this particular curtain was blown all out of whack. It's a stiff curtain, so it's hard to reorganize.

At this point in time, we have to roll it up by hand. Try doing that with a messed up curtain.

Steve and I started milking and it was like the cows sensed my black, prickly aura.

The first "incident" involved cow Number 787 (aka Bozo). She's new to the entire milking parlor situation and it stresses her out anyway. Adding my aura turned her into a super freak!

She doesn't realize she can casually walk into the milking parlor. There really is no need for her to stampede from one end of the holding area into the milking parlor.

I kid you not. It was like she was a rodeo bull.

Well, I should have known better, to just stand off to the side as she tried to jam her way into an already-full milking parlor.

She thought my right food was a spring board. She precisely planted her rear left foot onto the top of my right foot. Apparently she really wanted to be in the parlor because she kept grinding her foot on mine in an effort to squeeze into the parlor.

Boy, oh boy, it hurts to have a 1,300-pound animal putting all that pressure on the top of my foot.

As of this point in time, I haven't had the guts to look at it. It should be OK.

One: It's not bleeding. Two: It doesn't hurt to walk on it. Three: It's not swollen.

I just looked at Number 787 and said, "Really? Was that necessary?"

She ran away.

Must've been the aura again.

So, I get back to work and cow 857 decides she doesn't like me either.

As I start to pre-dip her teats to disinfect them so she, yes she, stays healthy, she decides to give me the cow-version of an Ushiro Geri, a back kick in karate. I think Number 857 has a black belt.

Apparently I invaded her private space.

She kicked my arm so hard that the dipping cup was catapulted out of my hand and landed six feet away; in front of the cow standing next to her.

I grumbled and turned my aura into a black, prickly, poisonous blob.

"I'm really not feeling the love for the cows this morning," I told Steve. "It's one of those days when I just want to be done with milking for the morning."

I was kicked by 653, 752 and 827.

I was beginning to think that maybe I had body odor or something. So many cows didn't want to be near me.

Maybe my aura actually does exist.

Just as I built up my aura, Sylvie walked up to the parlor entrance and took a big sniff of my hair as I prepped another cow. I couldn't help but smile and scratch behind her ears and under her neck.

She's such a sweetie pie. Everyone that milks cows here just loves Sylvie.

It made me think that all of the cows are not jerks and I was finally feeling the love.

For questions, or comments, e-mail me at kahoffman@newulmtel.net.

 
 

 

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