I have also watched him for 28 wonderful years. His passion for the farm has been unwavering. On our first date I was to meet him at his parents house and we would go out for dinner. I arrived on time and was told by his parents that he was still at the barn. "That's OK" I said. "I can wait for him". And I did. I had a lovely conversation with his parents on that warm sunny, summer evening. It was really quite tranquil, sitting in the grass looking over the lake. Until!Wait for it! A truck door slams,the sound of bare feet running on the walkway."I'm sorry I'm late. I had to finish up at the barn". "That's OK" said I."But where are your boots?"(at this point I was looking at some pretty filthy feet)."I couldn't find them" he said. "I had to chore in bare feet". This should have been my first clue as to what I was possibly getting myself into. The date obviously went well considering that we're still together.
There were many other incidences that should have set off the radar. Whenever friends would call and ask for him, the answer always seemed to be "He's at the barn". Now when friends call, they ask first if he is at the barn. I guess you would call that Pavlov's theory. Some friends joked that the barn was "The Other Woman". For years I was competing with a force that I could never beat. I have always enjoyed the farm but never to the extent that Cam has. We have worked together to make it a business with him doing the labor part and myself mostly doing the sales part. This has slowly changed. I would say that we now spend almost the equal amount of time working there and we try to share our ideas across the board.
I have been following and observing Cam for quite some time and ask him a million and one questions. We have had some very "healthy" discussions about our practices. We are continually looking for ways to improve the health of the animals and the land. We talk a lot about how to promote and get our product to the customer. Our heads wear many different hats and this can sometimes be overwhelming. I would like to consider myself fully inaugurated as a farmer. Yep, I contracted his illness and the obsession is also mine.
I have been trying to figure out how this happened. I think it began with the contented feeling one gets when being around animals and nature. The days I get to see new life when calves and piglets are born. When chicks hatch out of their shells. The days when I inspect the fences and watch for new plant life come to the fields after a long hard winter. The days when I watch the animals grow, looking for signs of good health and contentedness. The days when we are harvesting hay on a hot summer day and get a glimpse of wildlife in the field. And the days when I lose an animal and feel the loss and respect for them. Our days are long and busy, and sometimes we are beyond tired but we always look forward to the next day to see what is in store for us.This, is how I now also have a "Stupid Obsession" to the farm. This way of life is one that to me has purpose. It has given me more than I believe I have given to it. It has restored my faith in relationships with the animals, the land and the community. It is through the farm that I have found a voice and my wish to share this experience with others.
So when I call this a "Stupid Obsession", it is with a lighthearted laughter and I think I wouldn't have it any other way!
We have a full stock of Pork products in the Farm Store. Click on "Farm Store" for a complete list of what is available this month!
"The Egg Fridge is open for business. It is filled daily with those oval delicacies!
"Taste the Difference"