Tue | Aug 22, 2017

Kelly's World | Farming? Great, but not for everybody

Published:Monday | September 5, 2016 | 9:10 AM

Ran into a couple of old-timers in the rural area recently.

They were a couple of cool old boys, taking a break from their farming. They lamented the fact that many young people - at least the ones they know, don't want to go into farming. They believe the young ones only want to sit around all day, drinking this and smoking that, and waiting for handouts of any kind from anyone.

While I don't necessarily agree that all young people are allergic to work, or are waiting for handouts, I do agree that most of them will not go into farming. Quite frankly, I don't think I would go into it either. Let me be veeeeery clear about something — I have the utmost respect for farmers. I think it is a noble profession. The hard work that is required is enough for any person who does it to earn my respect. And the fact you are helping to feed a nation? Now that's even better. Farming I believe, is one of those things that man was placed on the earth to do. It's a big deal.

PUT YOUR BACK INTO IT

But because it's so important, and sooo tedious, I totally understand why many people, especially the young, won't do it. You literally have to put your back into it. Not to mention the hours. Get up before the cock crows, and work for hours in the boiling sun. That's not many people's ideas of fun. The ironic thing is, it's a job that young people would be good at. Because of the physical demands on the body, it's really something a young person should tackle. They are already working out their backs doing 'other things' so why not do some good for the country? Personally I'm too old to take it up. This particular old dog doesn't have much learning of new tricks left in him. But a teenager, or someone in their early 20s? Get out there and dig!

Separate and apart from the physical demands though, there is the fact that farming may not produce the desired effect in terms of financial rewards. How many times have we heard farmers complain bitterly about not getting a good price for their produce? Who wants to have that battle with a consumer? I for one know I would get ignorant. And if I'm loony tunes with my bare hands, imagine me with a machete? Exactly. And let's not even talk about predial larceny. Imagine yuh ketch di bwoy dem a pick off yuh ackee, or a dig out yuh yam? Or worse, a load yuh cow or goat inna car back? Police say yuh must turn them in. I will turn them in yes. Turn them into corpses. At the very least, dem a lose a limb.

So look yah now. Farming is great. If you can manage, do it. There are plenty of old-timers willing to teach. But if you can't tek di heat, literally, then massa come out a di sun. Later

Link me at daviot.kelly@gleanerjm.com