Cobwebs happily flutter in the gentle breeze in all the corners of the doors, stalls, and rafters; dust seriously collects in and on every available space; hay and straw are strewn all over the floor like children’s lego blocks; and surely not to forget all the poo deposited in the four corners of each stall. Why would anyone want to clean one of these messy, dusty ‘ole places?
Suppose it is confession time for this PFO. There is no time like time spent out in the barn. It does not favor any season of the year nor time of day. Anytime of the year is a wonderful time to be out in it, and every hour has it’s own specialness. The smells, temperatures, and critters all vary during a day. Several of the critters were put there by this PFO. Others appropriated it for themselves, seeing it very fit for raising and feeding their family. One must be very still and quiet to catch a glimpse of those that have adopted it as their home, for they keep to themselves, and come out only when all is either dark or quiet. As God would have it, they are a benefit to the ecosystem of the barn. The barn swallows eat pesky, biting flies, as do the spiders. The black snakes eat the mice. They also add to the overall mess! But it is nothing a hot cup of coffee and pre-breakfast homemade biscuit cannot handle.
Certain sounds and smells are unique only to barns, and a well-kept barn always has the sweet smell of fresh hay wafting in the air. Horses stamp their feet impatient for feed, cows moo softly as they saunter in, the chuckles are busy working in the manure piles (good Chuckles!), the baby birds are chirping high up in the rafters for more, more food from busy parents.
It is a dusty, dirty satisfying job. Being a good steward is important. Visitors to the farm go away with a good or bad idea of farming and how this farm is run. The goal is to send them off with a smile, knowing these animals (and farm) are well cared for.