The care, maintenance and feeding of the average farmer.
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Viking, Minnesota

Rural Reflections Radio

In the last few months several individuals from my social circle have found partners. Some of these people are friends, some family but all either farm or are very close to the life. Today I thought about what these relationships had in common and what some good pointers are for a being in a relationship with a farmer.
 
Many of my well-meaning friends have tried to set me up with someone who liked cattle. This sounds like a logical idea but I’ve always said that the cattle are my own uniques interest. I could not imagine life without cattle but they are only one part of my personality. I have many other interests and the farmers I know do too. Fishing, movies, sports, the arts, travel are just a few interests of my own friends. Hollywood’s treatment of the farmer as a silent individual who does not know his own feelings is also a myth. Any person who is close to the land or close to cattle knows his or her feelings. Watching a cow give birth, planting and raising crops or watching the whole thing fall apart brings them face to face with their feelings on a regular basis. Farmers do not distance themselves from their emotions but rather embrace them as their emotions are one of the reasons they farm. What a farmer likes in a partner is probably what anyone else would-only more so. One day I was finishing up work at home and tried to get one more thing done before I went to see my friend, Lisa. I called her and said I would be s late. She told me that was not a problem. That kind of understanding makes me want to climb mountains and slay dragons to be on time the next time. Lisa also gives me balance in my life. Striking a balance is very personal and particular to each relationship but in my case it means getting a little more sleep and knowing when to call it quits at the end of the day. I also have trouble remembering that the world consists of people and not just cattle and Lisa gently reminds me; “Call your mom” or “You should see your Grandma more.”
 
Farmers like someone who likes being at home. My neighbor went to London for his honeymoon, my brother Steve and his wife Jeana love dinner out when they can and brother Darrel and his wife Melanie have an ice-fishing house nicer than the first three places I rented. However, they know, home is best. Investing time, work, money and emotion into the place you live always pays back and a farmer knows this because he has already invested this way in the land.
 
Lisa and I watched the movie “Castaway” last night. I could here her sniffle at certain emotional parts and I found it touching. We all need someone in our life, it’s just so much better when they’re the right person.