The sights, sounds and smells of the life I knew

It all started with a man who wasn’t afraid to dream.  It continued and thrived with men who kept dreaming. And the dream will live forever.

It may have been the ending of an era and the turning of a page.  But that doesn’t mean the dream and the life that we know is over.

As a writer, it’s my job to tell stories.  It’s not often that I get to write a complete story about myself or the ending of a story.

But now I’m lucky enough to have the opportunity to do both.

The barn on highway 69 is my second home.  When I would walk in I didn’t hear the loud beat of the milk pump.  I didn’t hear the bellars of hungry calves. And I didn’t hear the hum of the feedcart.  I heard country music up loud and the thoughts in my head.

The last couple days I didn’t take a single sound for granted.  I heard the loud beat of the milk pump. I heard every single calf bellar.  And I heard the every hum of the feedcart.

I heard the pulse of milk going through the milking lines.  And I heard the sounds of goodbye.

I heard the last bellars of my cows.  I heard the last milk go through the milk lines.  I heard the final sounds of a full barn. And of course I heard the trailers pull out of the driveway and out of my life.

The image of 54 foot semi trailers stirring up dust and pulling away from our farm is an image that will be forever etched in my mind.  

When tears begin to well up in my eyes, instead of letting them spill down my cheeks I think of all the good memories that I will have forever.

I think about lime dust on my boots and lime on the walk.  I think of the brown noses of my cows as they ate. I think of the piney smell of shavings and the beat of the milk pump.  I think of the calves bellaring when it’s time for milk and dead mice in water pails. I think of eating and milking the cows at the same time.  

I think of milking my cows for the last time. I think of seeing them for the last time.  And I think of watching them pile on the trailer.

I think of the empty barn.  I think of where my cows are now, and how they feel.  

After the barn fire and the dispersal of our milking herd, Sarbacker Cattle Company was founded. Sarbacker Cattle Company focuses on raising show heifers for my siblings and for other local farmers.