out on the farm


When I was growing up, I lived on a farm. The kind of farm that had 6 horses, 50 pheasants, 5 dogs, lots of dead cats and mice, little lambies, and the expectation that we would get up at 6 every morning to feed those dang horses before school. The kind that had acres of land filled with trees, animals and rocks for my brothers and I to explore and make up all sorts of games.

I never much got into the whole cowboy thing like some of my brothers did (they now have mustaches and wear wranglers with checkered shirts tucked in), but I will always remember the smell of horses after it rained, and all of the space we had to play "slaves and masters", jump on the tramp, and hit each other with styrofoam bats.

Since high school, my family moved more into the city and we had to get rid of our farm and some of the horses. We own a little patch of land north of Cedar where we grow hay and keep the horses. My dad goes there a lot for an excuse to get the dogs and himself filthy while playing in the dirt and building things.

While in Utah this last time, we loaded up the three dogs into our beat up Ford truck (my mom will someday be on Hoarders for dogs) and went to look at the baby horse we have. It was a cloudy, summer rain type of day in Southern Utah; my very favorite type of day. The muggy air was filled with the drawling sound of old country music crackling from the radio and smelled of fresh water and damp growth. The sky was a darkish purple color, and there was a heavy feeling of impending rain and air charged with electricity. If I had my choice, all days would be like this in Cedar.

Our dog, Luke Skywalker, rolled in the mud while gnawing on the ball we played fetch with. He would run like crazy up and down the field while my dad dug a ditch in the spattered ground to direct the water downwards, away from the horses.

While he was finding any excuse to use his shovel, My mom and I went to pet the horses while they were eating their hay. Quite munching and soft whinnies hung around us as the wind whipped through the shack nearby and messed up our hair.

That's my mama. Isn't she beautiful?

The shack is filled with random odds and ends; old, beat up tractors, pieces of wire, tamped down hay, horse hair brushes and bridles, lead ropes, tools, old boats, barrels of oats, the musty smell of wet horse hair and hay, tired-looking tires and crates probably filled with dead mice.

Speaking of mice, I remember a time back on the farm when we had a major mice problem. As a result, we had tried to get a couple cats to live in the barn so they would catch the mice. As a result of THAT, we ended up with many a beheaded cat on our front lawn, courtesy of one of five country dogs. With one hoorah, we bought one last cat. She lived. We named her DAX, acronym for Dead Cat Society (not the same letters? You or I must really not understand the depth of our creative genius back then).

She lived with us for a time, as a reward for not getting caught by the devilish dogs and surviving against all odds. 

Then we gave her to my aunt, who promptly de-clawed her, and re-christianed her "Sassy". I suppose it's good retirement for a veteran lifestyle the type of which DAX led. 

Needless to say, the farm brings back some good memories, olfactory and otherwise.
Did I mention it was good to be home?


  1. Love it. Except the animals - and the dirt.

  2. I loved your farm. That house and all the was associated with it. We had such good times there! Wonderful pictures!



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