The Thirtieth Olympiad swirls around us, but down on the farm we are in the midst of our own marathon. As we come to the end of the long hours of what is referred to as “blueberry season” (we still have to weed, water and harvest everything else) we can mark the end (we hope) of the fairly frequent 14-hour day. Everyone is plodding onward. The college contingent of the crew is looking forward to the comfort of returning to sleeping later and air-conditioned classrooms, and the rest of us will look forward to taking comfort in the cooler weather of September, if and when it finally arrives. We have been slogging through a drought and a lot of 90-degree days this summer. Roy says that the hot days in Jamaica have nothing on the hot days in New Hampshire. Today we are watching the radar to see if we can pick up a much needed shower, otherwise Mike will be back to wrestling irrigation pipe and priming finicky pumps. We are all ready for a change.
A nice thing happened yesterday. While on one of my infrequent stops at the farm stand I ran into Larry Dore, Plainfield Police Emeritus. Larry has been stopping by and getting corn at the farm stand for just about as long as we have had one. I looked into his bag and made some remark that the paltry four ears of corn were another one of our mutual concessions to advancing years. (20 years ago we were easy 4-6-ears-a-sitting men). In the course of chatting about retirement, he made some very unwarranted but kind remarks about the value of the type of work that we do on the farm, and the contributions it makes to the greater community. He even thought that what I do for work might have more real tangible value than his career. I, however, might draw the line saying that I don’t think farming is more valuable than his job of keeping the bad guys behind bars and keeping the honest people honest, a job he executed professionally and effectively for so many years. But it was nice to hear, and made me feel good for a few minutes until I got back out into the broiling sun and 90-degree heat. The irony was that we never set out to do something noble. At the end of the day we were just like so many other working stiffs setting out to do a job, have a lifestyle and make a living. And trying not to do any collateral damage along the way to anyone or anything. Glad that it seems to be turning out that way.