I really should know better than to ask that question. Growing up with a dad who was a farmer and now being married to one, you just know that sometimes you are along for the ride. And sometimes they are the best rides.
We were coming home recently from the lake and he turned a different way, well a new way that I had never been. “Why are we going this way?” I asked. And I got the classic farmer answer, “I want to check some fields.” “Great,” I thought, another road for me to learn in this county that I’m still getting used to.
Much of what you learn growing up on a farm are from things you observe. Growing up, I would patiently wait in the back seat or next to my dad in the truck. One thing I learned pretty quickly is that he could drive on the road without actually watching the road! It was as if he had eyes on the sides of his head as he looked out the windows to check each row of corn and soybeans growing in the fields. When I first started to notice this, I was scared. But then I realize that it’s just part of it, we were safe, it is just part of the farmer way of life and something they do.
The second thing I learned was not to ask where we were going. He was going to get us home or to our destination even if it took a little longer which I learned was okay. We got to explore new ways of getting somewhere; we learned new things along the way about the history of our county or the family that once farmed the land. Our parents never let us have a TV in the car and we rarely read or played games, we looked out the window at the fields or roads or towns along our drive and explored the world on a different path each time.
The third lesson I learned from these unexpected drives was to listen. Once you get farmers in their element or on a topic they know, you learn a lot. I basically learned much of what I know about farming, the crops we grow, weed and pest control, the markets, the weather and the land I love by listening to my dad on these drives. And now I’ve continued that tradition with my husband.
I’m not one to question God about the way things are going or the path he has set forth before me. So I’m not sure why I asked the farmer because I am certain he was taking us along a path that would lead us to where we were going, we would get there safely and
I would even learn a thing or two along the way.
With today’s ever present questions of “why this way?” and “why that way?” about so many topics and issues, I feel pretty lucky to know why I am going a certain way and down a certain path. And even if I don’t, I know everything will be okay when we get there. I hope you have that confidence or luck and if not, maybe you should take a drive with a farmer.