Winter Touring for the Brave

The mares chatted me up every time I came over the hill.
The mares chatted me up every time I came over the hill.

Now that Madam and I are home from our 10-day caper on a dairy farm, it seemed like a perfect time to debrief about the trip. It was, after all, an uncommon winter adventure – an agrarian version of Will Steger’s dogsled journey to Antarctica. Rather than slip away for a week in Key Largo, we hoofed it across the Wisconsin border to care for eight broodmares and assorted pets… in a sustained blizzard.

“So tell me,” I asked Madam. “How does it feel to be home?”

“Easy,” she replied without hesitation.

“Could you elaborate?” I asked, noting that our wintery jaunt did not resemble an Odyssey tour.

“Yup,” she said. “I’m finding it easy to remove snow from my sidewalk with a shovel instead of a Bobcat Skidsteer Loader. And it’s easy to sleep with one Jack Russell terrier instead of two. It’s also easy to thaw my frozen garage door with a hair dryer instead of burning out the motor on someone else’s,” she added.

True. I recalled one frozen garage door episode at the farm. It resulted in a power outage and a visit from the local LiftMaster mechanic. But, then Madam is resourceful, though not mechanically savvy. Even the TV croaked the minute she picked up the remote.

“Well how about the weather?” I probed, recalling sub-zero mornings. “Might you have enjoyed a cozy afternoon of Mahjong with friends instead of battling a stiff wind and a pitchfork?”

“The calves were good company,” she offered. “They bucked and galloped their appreciation every time I drove past in the John Deer gator. The broodmares chatted me up each time I came over the hill,” she added. “And they enjoyed cluttering up their beds the minute I cleaned them.”

Hmm… perhaps I should have been helping her with the pitchfork instead of flirting with a filly named Nicca Cat. And my Canasta tournament didn’t fly with the mares either. I made a mental note to call the University Extension about gender-sensitive training for geldings.

“And the sub- zero weather?” I probed, frankly expecting Madam to say that next year we would be heading to Key Largo instead of dairy farm country.

“The Carhartt coveralls and earflap hat insured 10 blissful days sans hair styling,” she chirped. “No make up. No TV nightly nightmare news. No Save the Squirrels phone solicitations, No Facebook flaps or analyzing Google Analytics. Gee, a person could pay a lot for that kind of peace and quiet.

She made a good point. So, I’ve decided to call Odyssey Travel and suggest that they add winter dairy farm touring to their offerings.




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