There are always some days that have trouble getting ‘booted-up.’ After a good sleep I woke up feeling a bit like ‘not one nor the other.’ A bit like someone being asked ‘did you like your dinner’? Yea, ‘not too’ bad. It is hardly a standing ovation to the cook, is it? I’ll try and start with just a few words like; some years ago…
Some years ago on the farm I remember getting a very enthusiastic response to a meal cooked by Helvi. One of our grandsons, without further ado, climbed on the table and started licking the gravy direct from the saucepan. We let him indulge his gravy passion uninterrupted. I mean, they so quickly grow up having to adjust to a world critical of climbing on tables and licking gravy. I too still remember eating direct out of saucepans but not from the table. It is a slight difference. Holland is more proper and proper values are strictly regulated.
It was also at the time, the grandson used to pee all in a row from the large veranda floor surrounding our farm. They all took that proud stance that all boys adopt in the burgeoning art of young boys discovering being able to direct their stream. They did, and as far as possible. When Helvi asked why they did this, the answer was, oh well, the toilet is inside, too far.They were so busy playing around that they left going to the toilet to a bursting emergency status.
There is nothing like life on a farm that gives kids such valuable lessons. It ought to be made compulsory. Many school kids do visit animal farms or get taken to rural properties. There is just nothing like it. Of course, as there is with all life there is birth as well as death.
We had alpacas. It was in spring that one gave birth. All the boys were watching as the birth was progressing. An hour or later the afterbirth came about. One grandson poked it bravely with a stick. What’s this, he asked?
I explained as good as possible. All out of the blue, he asked; Do animals eat this? I said that perhaps dogs or most likely foxes might. What about people, he asked? No, I don’t think so, I said. He thought about this, but did not want to let it rest yet. What about English people? I had to laugh.
He was just three and the world so far had only family and locals in it. The ‘English’ was a different world to him and perhaps in his logic he somehow already thought that in the outside world things might well be different, so, perhaps English people could well be different and eat different foods.
Not silly reasoning for someone so young.
Some time later we came across a dead wombat. Wombats are rather top heavy. When they die, they mainly end up with their legs sticking up. The same grandson wanted to take a closer look. I stopped the car and we both walked over. He seemed sad and I thought of asking if he would like to do something. He said; can you put some lollies on his eyes? I said, of course you can. Why? He might get better, he answered. Next day we drove by, the lollies were still there. The wombat must be dead, he said.