Editor’s Note: this is the fourth installment in our eight-part “Farm to Table” series. The Morrison family is a fictional dairy farm family. Join us as we follow their adventures in “Farm to Table!”
Part Four: Waving the Green Flag!
Spring on the farm means my Dad is up before the sun and I can sleep with my windows open. It’s so peaceful and I sleep like a log.
Last week, Dad was waiting for me when I got to breakfast. He was grinning ear-to-ear. I know he’s generally chipper following the morning milking, but really?
“Grab your cereal,” he tells me.
I pour some whole milk onto my cereal. That’s my favorite. I just love the taste and Mom says I am still growing. I mean, chocolate milk is okay and Alyssa keeps telling me it’s good after a workout, but whole milk is the choice for me.
As I start to down my breakfast, Dad slides a large envelope across the table to me.
“Open it,” he says.
I rip the envelope open and immediately spy the checkered flag print. “Are these tickets to the Indy 500?” I am shocked. Growing up, we’d spend the Sunday of Memorial Day weekend listening to the race on the radio while doing chores. Some of my earliest memories of May are from the crackle of the AM radio, the broadcasters talking about the crashes, and that Jim Nabors guy singing “Back Home Again in Indiana.” We’ve always talked about a Dad-Son outing to see the race, but running the farm is a 24/7 job. Plus, it’s about an hour to Indy from the farm and Dad has always said there’s so much traffic at the racetrack.
I jump up and hug him. “I’m so pumped,” I shout. Alyssa and Mom come in from the dining room and tell me they were in on the surprise. I cannot believe it – I am finally going to the “Greatest Spectacle in Racing!” I know Indiana dairy farms like ours play a huge role in the festivities since the winner of the race drinks milk produced in Indiana.
I’d love to be an IndyCar driver someday, although I think Dad would prefer I be the dairy farmer handing the winning driver the milk. I think I’ve got time to convince him! We hit up the go-kart track a few times each summer and I always am the fastest behind the wheel.
On the big day, Mom wakes me up after Dad is finished with the morning milking. We grab lots of sunblock, hats, our tickets, and a cooler filled with milk and snacks for our trip to the track. Oh my gosh, I am so excited that I barely slept! The sun is shining high as we pile into the truck and head north. We even turn on the radio to listen to the pre-race festivities and get the traffic report. As we get closer to the world’s most famous racetrack, I can feel the excitement in the air. Hundreds of thousands of people from all over, all in one place to see this race. I’m finally one of them!
I wonder how loud it’ll be. I wonder who will win. I wonder what milk they’ll drink in Winner’s Circle. It’s going to be a great day!
Check back next month for Part Five, where my Mom will tell you all about summer on the farm!