Over the years I have quite rightly been criticised for my chronic overuse of acronyms. Working in an industry where is it common place for conversations to consist wholly of abbreviations has been one reason for my mild obsession with shortening sentences with the other being I quite enjoy the challenge.
Two of my more popular creations in this space have been IWOTS (I wouldn’t of thought so) and TMTI (Talk me through it) both of which I take a modicum of pride in however my feeling is that YOC will be the crowning glory when it comes to my acronym career.
It was at one of our infrequent yet highly enjoyable dinner club gatherings that the Year of Change aka YOC came about. A number of guests were talking about 2019 and what it would hold for them. One person was embarking on a totally new career after over 15 years working in one industry. Another had recently purchased a small business and lastly one of the hosts was taking her existing business into the digital age through the development of an edgy new website.
Then of course there was Wifey and I who over the course of a very reflective Christmas and New Year period made the decision to move to Mulga Springs on a full time basis. I actually should rephrase that and say that I made the decision we would move to the farm as it was not something that Wifey would have ever contemplated without my full agreement. As it turned out Wifey didn’t have to ask me at all as I came to realise my close minded approach around moving to the farm wasn’t doing me or Wifey’s potential to do great things at Mulga Springs any justice at all.
A lot of people assume we do live at the farm and Wifey has often grappled with the fact she is only ‘playing at being a farmer’ because we don’t live on the property.
This is of course total rubbish with Wifey’s contribution not only to Mulga Springs but to the district in general being considerable.
Looking at it another way one could also argue that this blog too is flawed due to the fact our family has not been living at Mulga Springs although the fact I am married to farmer is never likely to be disputed.
Wifey’s contribution to the region was summed up very nicely by a fellow committee member of one of the several boards/committees Wifey sits on. I will be forever grateful to the young farmer who said to Jess “The best thing that has happened to sheep in this district is you” as I saw it had an immediate effect of dispelling some of those ‘playing farmer’ feelings.
I am no doubt bias as well as fiercely protective whenever Wifey’s work ethic is questioned. As a Mum of three who commutes 90 mins a day and has a husband who spends more time in airline lounges than in his own lounge room what Jess has achieved to this point makes me one very proud husband.
We have been fortunate enough to have au pairs help us during our journey however this arrangement has always been a necessity rather than a luxury. Indeed my standard line that we don’t have au pairs so Jess can have a latte and a manicure still stands although I did recently have one dour farmer suggest I was far more likely to get regular maincures than Wifey.
ZANALIE will of course also be affected by the YOC and as expected have responded in ways aligned to their distinctly different personalities. ASH has decided at the age of 8 that the move to Topwell (the farm where we will reside) cements the fact she is going to be a farmer as soon as she is able to drive. ZCP, who I was initially concerned about has fully embraced the idea albeit due to the fact he wants to get a little “side by side” and a tomahawk to chase rabbits and foxes which is a little concerning but at this stage manageable.
AGie would be happy anywhere providing she has people to talk to and her older siblings to terrorize.
The YOC is likely to result in many different outcomes to those affected by it however my greatest hope is that it will bring the stability and continuity that Mulga Springs has been seeking over the last decade.
Among those outcomes has been the employment of Charlie who started working with us two months ago and has been a very welcome addition to Mulga Springs. As was the case with KK I am very much looking forward to gaining any farming tips from Charlie which make me sound less inept while discussing all things agricultural with Kissa and Wifey.
When ZCP was wearing new age cloth nappies an incident arose leading to one of the more robust discussions Wifey and I have ever had. I bring this up now as the resultant observation made by Jess was not only one of her funniest but can also be applied to our current situation.
Me: So I am assuming we’ll be abandoning the cloth nappy experiment now we have Amelie and Zach?
Wifey: No way! I have spent hundreds of dollars on those nappies so we will be using them with both of the kids.
Me: Okay but I do think it is a bit tough on the au pairs to have to deal with the aftermath of some of the poo explosions while the kids are “donning the cloth”.
FKIW take 3
(This was somewhat disingenuous on my part as it was me not the au pairs who had an issue with the cloth nappies)
Wifey: The bamboo nappy liners are there to catch the poo and besides if we are up to our waist in shitty nappies being neck deep in them won’t make much difference will it?
It was with this last point in mind that I recently applied for the Australian Rural Leadership Program (ARLP) which is a 15 month program designed to develop stronger leadership within the communities and industries of rural, regional and remote Australia . https://rural-leaders.org.au/our-programs/arlp/
Wifey and I discussed this at length and decided that while the YOC currently has us up to our waist in opportunities and challenges why not just get neck deep and see how we go.