Sunday, May 5, 2013

Helping my Brother Out

By the time my cousins and siblings and I came along our grandparents' farm was not a working farm. Everything was left as it had been when the barn was full of cows and horses; chickens and pigs. There were still some stray feathers in the roosts. Empty milk cans sat unused. Stanchions sat idle. Most days when the bus would bring us home from school my brother would walk up the road to a nearby farm and help out. He was a hard worker. He was also a neat freak-the total opposite of me! I remember sneaking into his room to look at his stamp collection. It was so organized; as were his school notebooks and closet.

 A couple of times he bought a few heifers and kept them in the barn. One time it was black angus. It was fun having animals in the barn. I could only imagine what it must have been like back in the day when the farm was up and going. I think our grandfather would have been proud of my brother who was the first grandchild. They were quite close. My brother inherited his work ethic. My brother cared for the heifers and black angus every day before school and every day after school. One summer he asked me if I'd care for the black angus for a few weeks. He was going to visit relatives. I was thrilled. I was also nervous. Being as organized and particular as he was, I felt I had some big shoes to fill. But I didn't tell him that. I followed him around a few days before he left-and then-it was me and the angus!

We did just fine. The barn got a little out of control but by the time he returned I had it all organized. All the black angus were fed and accounted for. My brother brought me back a pack of Juicy Fruit gum for helping him out. I was overjoyed. I may not have filled those big shoes of his-but I had fun trying!

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