They may be crucial products in a vast industry â€“ but abandoning our relationship with the cattle we keep would mean throwing away something valuable. By John Connell
Iâ€™ve got my arms in her passage and Iâ€™m trying to find the new calfâ€™s feet. As a farmerâ€™s son, Iâ€™ve birthed calves aplenty, but always as the helper, holding a cowâ€™s tail up or pulling the calf out at the last moment. My father has been in charge of the calving for 25 years, and when he wasnâ€™t, my brother took over. But now itâ€™s me.
Iâ€™m home again in rural Ireland, back after being an emigrant, and, in exchange for a roof over my head, itâ€™s been agreed that I will help out on the farm. Thereâ€™s a lot tied up in this birth for me â€“ much more than the cow knows.
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