Some of you might know I grew up on a farm in the middle of nowhere. It was an interesting way to grow up. For a long time after I left, I was just glad to live somewhere with pizza delivery, and now I'm glad I live somewhere with a music scene, museums, and the ability to get some delicious Ethiopian food on occasion. But I do miss a few things about the farm. Today I decided I should write some of them down.
- The big red Ford pickup. I don't necessarily miss the fact that I could drive a pickup, but I do miss the fact that it was a stick shift, something you never see on trucks anymore. Plus the fact it was capable of taking a crazy beating and the giant hole in the passenger seat where someone left a spotlight on facing downward and almost started the whole truck on fire. Plus memories of Shadow riding shotgun, or leaning up against you as you drove around the farm.
- The elm tree. Though I don't think I climb it after I turned 14, it was a fixture on the farm. It was huge, had been struck by lightning on numerous occasions and was the best climbing tree I've ever seen.
- The old wagon and frog rock. We had an old wooden wagon sitting out in front of the farmstead. I think it was painted when we moved but over the years it slowly started to fall apart. I remember playing on it a lot as a kid. At some point a giant rock was dug up from somewhere and ended up not too far from the wagon, if you looked at it just right it sort of looked like a frog.
- Native American artifacts - The lake, which has mostly dried up by the time we moved to the farm, was south of our house. It was a pretty major part of farm life for the first few years we lived there. I still remember being shown the Tipi rings and looking for arrowheads along it's shores. There was also an old burial site next to it. I can't say I spent a ton of time around them, but I definitely remember them.
- The milk barn/old barn/I don't remember what the name of it was. We had two barns on the farm, one was the pig barn, which was a single story building that was almost always leaning to the side. The other was a much sturdier building. It had a hay loft and actual stalls for animals. It wasn't used a lot when we lived there, it was mostly the place where we fed the farm cats. I remember exploring the upper level on many occasions and still have occasional nightmares of walking in when our dog Sheba, a German Shepard, was getting the crap beat out of her by a barn cat.
- Hay bales - I don't miss baling hay or tossing square bales onto the backs of trucks, but I do remember running around the hay lot as a kid. It was fun climbing up to the second level of hay bales, which was about 14 feet in the air and running along the top. I still remember the day I missed a stop and fell straight down in between the bales of hay. I don't know how I managed to not break my legs from that fall.
- A few other things I miss, the old thresher in the back yard, exploring the brambles and windbreak in the back of the farmstead, branding, the ability to go for a walk and not see another person for hours, stars...
It was an interesting. Sometimes the fact that I'm as big of a proponent of city living as I am surprises me considering I grew up about as far from a city as you possibly can. Still, there are things I miss from my childhood, especially from the farm. I don't know why I've been reminiscing about these things lately, probably a sign I need to take a road trip soon.