So my father is a farmer, his father was a farmer, and his father and so on….. At what point do you admit that the line ends at your generation? Can you call yourself a farmer if you know you will take over and just cash rent out the land? What about when you pass the farm to your kids and they have never driven a tractor?
My father raised field corn and soybeans. He has finally retired, but they are right next to the field. The farm shows are still on, the magazines still show up and they still attend the seed dinners each spring. I can tell you if a field is corn or beans as we drive down the road – Years of my dad making me go out to watch corn grow with them umpteen times every season! I am a serious corn snob when it comes to eating sweet corn. That comes from eating sweet corn every meal while it was in season for my entire childhood. My kids will never have that though. They have never run across a newly planted field, hunted for arrow heads in a newly ploughed field, or even had to sit for hours on end in a field with just a book for company. They also didn’t walk beans in 4th grade or even walk beans ever.
My kids haven’t even had a dog (yes they had hamsters, and my husband once agreed to chinchillas) – but a dog was too much for him. Growing up I remember the time we had 32 dogs. People would just drop them off and my parents would let them stay. We had favorites and then there were just the ones that just were. They always had unusual names like Scuder, Dipstick, Waldo, Sandy, and even Peanut and Butter. To top it off, we would come home to find my dad’s latest odd addition to the collection…. We had everything from Fallow Deer to a Buffalo at one time or another.
I’m afraid things like this just can’t skip a generation. Of course my kids also aren’t facing things I grew up with like sharing their bedroom with a lamb that needed bottle fed every few hours, power going out for a week at a time, and coming home from school to find the kitchen table had been converted to butcher the latest hunt…. So even though I miss my kids not having the same childhood I had growing up; I’m fairly certain my kids would say that you don’t miss what you never had.