Quite impressive: My classmate drives a tractor. Seventeenth of twenty-six posts in the April 2017 Blogging From A to Z Challenge on the theme “Whispering Chimneys: My Altamont childhood” — where my genealogy journey began. Wish me luck — I’m more than halfway there!
If they operated a vehicle it was most likely a bicycle — and I had just barely graduated to a two wheeler. So imagine my surprise when I saw something quite impressive on the farm next door — one of my classmates driving a tractor!
The first time I saw him bump by atop the giant vehicle I could hardly believe my eyes. But sure enough he bumped by again — making wide circles as he tilled the field next to our back yard. How could this be? He wasn’t much bigger than me!
A real working farm
I thought about our farm Whispering Chimneys. Sure there was some chicken growing, hay mowing and a family business or two going — but my parents and maternal grandparents weren’t operating a real working farm. Not like the Mennonite family of my classmate next door.
Their farm was really something. They rotated their crops — one year there might be clover growing near us, the next year corn, and sometimes nothing at all while the field lay fallow.
On the best years they rotated the cows nearby! I loved to grab handfuls of grass from our yard and feel the cows’ warm breath when they poked their giant heads through our fence and rooted in my hands for the treat.
I decide to investigate
I decided to ask my classmate about the tractor driving the next time I saw him on the school bus. Only he wasn’t on the bus the next day, or the next — so I finally asked my parents about him.
“Oh, he gets time off school during planting season to help his parents on the farm,” Dad explained. Time off school? Really? Well, now I was even more amazed!
Here was a small boy — about the same age as me — who could already drive and got to skip school to do farm work. Quite impressive indeed!
Up next – Recital: “I’ll never dance again!” Please stop back!
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