|I was born a generation too late to really get in on the family farm. My Great Uncles were the last remaining Snow family farmers. My Uncle Pat died when I was about 13, his brother Reg is still alive, but at 80 is not terribly interested in farming.|
I was about 7 the first time Uncle Pat let me drive the tractor. He had been working on some of the field roads, adding gravel and such. Usually he drove the Farmall M with a big push blade and one of his friends or hired men would drive the dump truck bringing loads of gravel out of the pit. This day I had spent in the woods trying to snare rabbits, and sometimes watching Uncle Pat running the tractor. I had ridden with him many times so I knew all the controls. After dinner Uncle Pat decided it was going to rain the next couple days and he wanted to finish his work before it did. He called and called but couldn't get anybody to help, so he knelt down before me and said 'Do you think you're big enough to run the tractor for me?' I was nervous but excited, I don't think I actually said anything, but I was in the truck and ready to go before Uncle Pat could find his work boots. In actuality grading a road with a push blade is pretty dull work, back and forth, blade down push. Blade up, back up, but I was in heaven. Of course in the truck going back to my grandmother's I was told that today's activities were to be kept in the strictest confidence. Still, my grandmother must have known something was up, I was coated head to toe in road dust!
Ludwig- Curt Raymond, from MA, entered 2000-01-15