Today I learned how to milk a cow. I am apparently rather good at it and may have a hidden talent as (I quote) “Not many people are able to get so much milk in their first go”, I like to think it is because I sympathise with another female mammal seeking release from a body laden with milk (I remember the feeling of pressure, which can be unbearable). After a short demo in manual milking, our tour guide (known as Farmer Paul) then rigged the cow (known as Lovely) to the milking machine, which sucked off 10 pints in a matter of minutes. This experience was all part of a half-term visit to a ‘model farm’. As we entered, Farmer Paul greeted us and took the children for an interactive tour of the farm, feeding lambs, chickens and pigs, collecting eggs and milking cows – not a fairground ride in site. However, in the middle of the visit was a rather thrilling ride in ‘barrel bugs’ (basically converted oil barrels towed behind a tractor). The farm was situated in a stunning location and we also enjoyed a picnic lunch afterwards. In addition Farmer Paul was full of amazing facts, here are just a few:
– a family can survive living off the land of just one acre
– The strongest plant in the world is grass – very difficult to pull in two pieces – can’t even do it with a tractor
– There is such a thing as natural pink milk and that comes from a Yak
– A pig is closer to humans genetically than any other human yet has a greater variety of genetics than humans despite the fact that there are more humans than pigs in the world
– Stinging nettles are very nutritious and you can make all sorts of food and drink from nettles including soup and wine
There were many more facts that my daughter will probably remember better than me. When I woke up this morning I had no idea I would be learning how to milk a cow – I like that about life.
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Thanks for reading.