It was a bright, bitterly cold morning. As I came in after the morning milking and then handmilking a neighboring farm’s dairy cow, I felt depleted of energy and thankful for a hot cup of coffee. By 9 am it was 9 degrees. There’s just no point in knowing what it was when I arrived at the barn a quarter before 6.
The farm down the road always feels even colder. It has a more open landscape with less protection from gusts of wind. The cold just finds its home there, it seems.
Even with a bite in the air, the light in the three sided barn where I milk is soft and warm in the morning. My whole body was clenched in the cold and I felt as though I was being obliged to kneel for morning prayers.
And, inevitably, she listened.
As I crouched beside her, she shared her warmth and my hands began to lose their stiffness with the work. Looking beyond the milk pale as I settled into a two handed rhythm, I found some peace in those few moments and it flooded me with gratitude.