Gardening · Homesteading

Just A Farmhand

The other day I encountered a bitter person who threw what they considered an insult towards my family. They said “Just a farmhand” at my brother – said to me directly, as if that made him the lowest in society. They truly thought it was an insult. It showed how they think their pay grade is somehow higher. And the thing is…almost no one is above doing labor work. If your hands are smooth, maybe you need to ask why they are.

And yet….society needs farmers 3 times a day. Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner. And all those snacks and desserts. Farmhands are why grocery stores have food for you. Why plant nurseries have plants to buy.

The majority of people never stop to think about how their food gets to them.

But somewhere….a farmhand worked in the hot sun to harvest the wheat, rice and oats. The beans. The berries. The apples. The meat you consume. For the majority of America and Canada – and nearly all “First World” countries, the farmhand toils quietly and is never recognized.

That “just a farmhand” helped me set up a deer safe potting area recently, for our plant nursery. He helped get our main greenhouse ready yesterday, by hauling heavy loads of used hay out of it, and then hauled tray after tray of soil filled pots into it, to start the plant production for the growing season. That farm hand will help me ensure our fences get repaired and put up, to keep the deer and rabbits out. He will weed. He will help with irrigation.  He will haul animal feed and swing hoses around.

I have deep respect for those who work as farmhands. They might have dry, callused hands – but it is honest work. The kind that lets you sleep well at night.

And many farmhands are people of color. They do work that comfortable people think is below them now. If you are eating strawberries in America, you can nearly bet it was picked by a hard working Hispanic.

If you want to look entitled….look down upon people who do the work you consider below you.

You are not special. At all.

And I highly doubt the insulter could last a day without whining on the farm…..and he’s welcome to come over. The weeding is never done!