The End of a Good Job
May 26, 2013, 4:36 pm
Filed under: May 2013
The horses and I take a break on the landing

The horses and I take a break on the landing

May 26, 2013


It was late February 2012. The sap was just beginning to run and I was looking for help to gather it all. A boy showed up in the drive and introduced himself to me. He had an easy manner, a firm grip and an honest look in his eye. I hired him on the spot to work on the days that the sap was running.

He was a production oriented guy. He looked for the fastest, most effcient way to do a job, without short cutting the work. He was, very soon, one of our best gatherers. He has a easy way about him, that puts folks at ease. He is able to teach by lesson and example. He taught quite a few other boys how to gather and how to do it quickly.

The syrup season came and went that year. We moved on to the job of filling the sugarhouse woodshed. I kept Justin on as we completed that job, while getting the spring planting done. He continued to be an exceptional lad at working and took my joking and advice while he worked.

I decided to find enough work to keep Justin busy so I would have him when I needed him. He wound up doing all sorts of work. Many jobs were short, small tasks that had him doing all sorts of things. He learned to drive the farms equipment and use many tools. He most recently is learning to use a chainsaw. As usual he is careful, calculating and confident.

After a winter of doing chores, cutting firewood, plowing snow and shoveling mountains of manure, it was maple syrup season again. This year we went up to 1200 taps. The job of gathering more than tripled from 2012, when we had just 500 taps. Justin dug in and became the leader or perhaps pointman as the seemingly endless sap, kept flowing.

I have had the pleasure of watching the skinny boy from up town become a fit, young man over these last fifteen months. He is more confident than ever, but not one bit obnoxious. His honest eye looks toward the future. His grip is, as strong as, his hold on his life plan. The days spent working in the sugarwoods and around the farm, cemented him in the country for the rest of his life. I am sure that a bit of “Riceland” will follow him all of his days.

Justin starts a new job next week. He is following a career in carpentry. I am very proud of him. It is with mixed emotion that I bid him goodbye. We have tied up almost all of our loose ends. Today we finished the logging job that we had been doing. The only job left, is that of vaccinating the sheep flock. We will complete that one tomorrow evening.

We will shake hands and part ways as our employee/employer relationship ends tomorrow evening. The best part is, that we will start a new kinship. Our parting handshake will also be the begining of a new association. The wonderful connection of friendship … the kind that lasts forever!


2 Comments so far
Leave a comment

miss that love you

Comment by matt

We miss you too. Love you lots and lots!

Comment by ricelandmeadows

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: