Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Mentors & Mentees

I have found over the years that those who search out and buy goat milk are, in my opinion, special people.  They are not faddists or health nuts, but they do appreciate fresh, pure, tasty, and good.  They also seem to appreciate the lifestyle that provides their milk.  One family has been coming to Farview for over five years now, and I've watched their daughter grow from bottle to grade school.  They've remained loyal through those times when the girls are dry, coming back when the milk flows again.  Mother and father are hardworking, honest people who are raising their child with time-honored values.  They have become friends, and I look forward to their visits.

I'm going to lose a customer soon, as I sold them two milk goats last year and they'll have their own supply sometime this month.  This is a young couple who will have their second baby this year.  The father is making a go of full-time farming...not easy these days.  They raise chickens, some cattle, pigs, and now goats.  I talk goats and babies with the mom, and she is learning to card wool and wants to learn to spin.  Just as I learned handwork from my mother, I am so happy to be able to pass on the things I know how to do.  These are worthwhile arts that could be lost to future generations.  I will start her on the drop spindle and move on to the wheel.

A young man recently started buying milk.  (I was going to say "kid," and then realized that anyone under forty is a kid to me now, and those in their fifties are just youngsters.  Good grief.)   Ben worked on a farm back east and learned to love the lifestyle...and the milk.  Yesterday we spent time discussing the making of cheese, chevre and feta.  I could probably keep the secrets and sell him the product, but it is such fun to see someone who wants to learn, to take the process "back a step" as I want to do.  To be able to mentor these, yes, I will say kids, is a real privilege. 

It's snowing this morning.


Kathryn Williams said...

What goes around, does indeed come around, so sharing the secrets instead of keeping the secrets, will indeed prolong that bygone lifestyle that you are so graciously sharing with us! And I'm glad you have some mentees, because that means that "the kids" can someday pass on what you are teaching them! And...MORE SNOW??? What's up with that????

Mark said...

First off, go back and read yesterdays comment. It may help keep away unwanted voyeurs and embarrassing TV coverage. Your mentoring is important. "Give a man a fish you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish you feed him for a lifetime". I believe that what good you give unconditionally you get back twofold. My best friend and lifetime companion Dawn is a shining example of that practice and belief. The relationship bonds you develop from your mentoring have much more value than your "customer" bonds but I'm not telling you anything you don't already know. Hey, if it continues to snow how bout you make a goat snowwoman complete with you milking her and post a picture!

Judy said...

What did you think of the description of making cheese in GOAT SONG? It sounded complicated to me.

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