Get a feel for what it's like to be a farmer

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Don't you want to look this cute? (Photo credit: Jason Adams)
  • Don't you want to look this cute? (Photo credit: Jason Adams)

Breathe Magazine writer Jodi Helmer* recently spent a weekend at Fickle Creek Farm, in Elfin, N.C., and you can, too.

Here are a couple snippets from her experience:

“If the steers start charging towards you, take a low, wide stance and block their path.”

My eyes dart from the three five-month-old steers in their corral to Farm Manager Brian Horton.

“You want me to step into the path of a charging steer?”

When I signed on for a weekend at Fickle Creek Farm, a 61-acre sustainable farm in rural Efland, NC, I imagined idyllic farm chores like bottle-feeding lambs and collecting eggs in a wicker basket; the possibility of being trampled by cattle never entered my mind.

Once out of their dusty corral, the steers trot along the narrow path, stopping to munch on tufts of grass. In their apparent excitement, the frisky young boys kick up their heels, their bovine bodies dancing in the spring sunshine. And then it happens—halfway to the pasture, one of the steers turns around and starts racing towards us.

“Get wide and low,” Brian calls to me.

Against my better judgment, I plant my feet and spread my arms. The steer sees us blocking his path, stops in his tracks and turns back towards the pasture.

“See? I told you he would put on the brakes.”

Experiences like this are the reasons guests participate in stays at Fickle Creek Farm. Academics-turned-farmers, Ben Bergmann and Noah Ranells opened the farm to overnight guests in 2004.

Read the entire article here, and find out how the author overcomes her fear of birds while on the hunt for eggs.

Sounds like fun to me. Who's up for a road trip?

Jodi is also the author of The Green Year: 365 Small Things You Can Do to Make a Big Difference.

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