Oh the places you’ll go…”
It’s always entertaining to me to see the comparison between my livestock and non-livestock friends when the “how many states have you visited” quiz makes its yearly appearance in my Facebook newsfeed. My non-livestock friends will always comment about how incredible it is that my fellow agriculturalists have been to 25+ states compared to their 5 or so; and, what ever could they be doing so many miles from home?
The answer is always the same… “showing.”
With two daughters that had a passion for everything Hereford my parents spent the past 20 years in a truck and trailer chasing white lines. The Junior National Hereford Expo was our summer vacation, the Western Nugget was our excuse to visit Reno in December and our closest drive to the National Western in Denver was a family tradition for 50 years.
We’ve seen the bright lights of Tunica, Mississippi; spent what felt like forever traveling from Wyoming to Pennsylvania (shoutout to my East coast friends that haul all the time) and saw places on South Dakota backroads we still talk about as we journeyed to Sioux Falls. No matter the destination, the journey was always worth it.
On the plane home from my latest show travels to Jackson, MS where my husband judged the junior cattle at the Dixie National, the woman next to me asked if this was my first trip to the Magnolia State. When I told her it was actually my third (Tunica for Junior Nationals and Starkville for YBIC) she said something that caught me off guard. She told me whatever I was doing that brought me these places I should keep it up because not many people have the opportunity to see so much of the United States through more than just an airplane window.
Sometimes those of us in the livestock industry, especially this time of year, start to get road weary. When you’re tired from driving thousands of miles and sick of fast food or sitting in airports, try a change of perspective. It’s important to think about just how lucky we are. Whether you’re in a 15 passenger van, with your family in a truck and trailer or tagging along with your spouse to a show, the livestock industry takes you places far beyond the travels of an average person. It’s a privilege to travel the U.S. and learn about different livestock practices, crops that are not grown in your part of the country and people’s stories about their own experiences in the industry. It opens your mind, multiplies your friendships and fills your life with incredible experiences.
“Oh the places you’ll go…
You’ll be seeing great sights!
You’ll join the high fliers who soar to high heights! ”
I feel lucky to have 30 states checked off my list and can’t wait for the next one! When Dr. Seuss said “Oh the places you’ll go…” man was he right!
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