Monday, February 1, 2010

May 7, 2009 - Visit to a Cow Farm

May 07, 2009 – Visit to a Cow Farm
I drove around the block at least three times before taking courage to park in front of a funeral service agency. I used to study elementary school near this place. At that time, an array of coffins was displayed for passersby to see. An unpleasant site combined with the smell of fresh varnish and chrysanthemum exhaled out the door. As I pulled over, a funeral car that seemed to be following me, parked right behind. Quickly, I jumped from the car and crossed the street determined to talk to a funeral plan salesperson. A young man got off the car and approached me before I reached the sidewalk. “Hi. What happened to the owner of that car you are driving?”, he asked. “That’s because I am interested in buying his pick-up truck. Who are you?” I couldn’t hold my smile. Again, the old car spoke by itself. I think it is funny how easily we keep track of each other. “I am his daughter. Are you Danielle’s brother?” I had heard about him. His sister works as a secretary at nearby town where I take Organic Horticulture class. She is engaged to the cousin of my mother’s nurse. People give details (or numbers) about other people’s lives. I learned that this man who is not only a funeral plan salesman but an embalmer as well. He is on call 24 hours and makes only R$1,500.00 per month, informed me his sister. He was the person who I wanted to talk to. I was actually interested in getting a discount at doctor’s visit that comes with the funeral plan. He wanted to get a pick-up truck for his wife to haul milk. My father wouldn’t sell it. He still needs it. Besides, I could use to haul milk myself. Anderson is such a good-natured man and good looking that don’t match with his job. He not only gave me the information on the plan, but also about milk farm his parents’ have. I left with an invitation to visit his parents’ farm to see how to work with cows.
A few days later, I showed up at the farm with my father and daughter. His mother, a typical farmwoman, thin, fair skin, face wrinkled more by her own thoughts than by her age. I was surprised to see that they live in an old wooden house, almost extinct around here. That didn’t prove me their prosperity the milk supposedly was bringing. Dona Cleide proudly showed me a former pigpen adapted into a corral. It was more than rustic, it was primitive. But it looked it worked. The most modern thing was the mechanical milkier. My father candidly asked if health department inspector has never paid a visit, concerned about the hygiene, or the lack of.
I left with a slight feeling of disappointment for having expected to see a fancy project.

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