On my Instagram account it may seem like I’m travelling all the time but I’m actually working on a dairy farm in Australia for the last 11 weeks. As a city girl – born and raised in Rotterdam, studied and lived in Amsterdam – I’m used to having a supermarket within a 10 minute walk and enough opportunities for dinner or a drink at night. This job takes me totally out of my comfort zone. I do enjoy it, however off course there are some struggles I encounter..
1. Waking up early and working long days
Every day my alarm goes somewhere between 04:45 am and 5:15 am. I always thought: I’m a morning person, but these times are definitely something different! It took some time before I got used to going to bed and waking up early, but after some long days of hard working it wasn’t that difficult any more..
2. Bye social life
Because of the long working days, I don’t really have the time for a social life. While travelling is mainly about experiencing amazing things and meeting new people, working on a farm is about working. My days exist of working, eating and sleeping (which are actually still two of my favorite things in life ;)). But no parties, no dinners outside the house. I talk mostly to the animals, they are my social life now 😉
3. No knowledge of farm life
I think this is my biggest struggle. Before I started I had no idea how to approach a cow, no single clue. No knowledge of farm life means that I make mistakes once in a while which annoys me a lot. Like when the cows were too smart for my electric fence and ate the crop which was supposed to be their food for a week! Or that time when I ‘forgot’ some cows in a paddock while they had to be milked. Or when a cow stepped on my foot because I thought I would be faster in removing something. I could feel that mistake for weeks.
4. Getting dirty
Shit, shit and more shit. I didn’t know cows shit so much! Especially the first couple of weeks I was covered in poo splashes after every milking. Luckily now I’m a little bit better in avoiding cows doing their number two, but there are still moments when I don’t see it coming and get shit on. After a long day of working really nothing feels as good as taking a shower and wash all the dirt and smell away.
5. Driving 30 minutes to the supermarket
Okay that’s not true, the nearest supermarket is a 10 minute drive but all the products are 1-2 dollar(s) more expensive than somewhere else. So we, poor backpackers, drive 30 minutes to another supermarket to get our groceries cheaper. For me it’s so crazy to drive 30 minutes to a supermarket. In Amsterdam we have one on every corner of the street, not more than a 5-10 minute walk.
Despite these struggles I’m having a great time! I turned into an animal person and I enjoy the beauty of the farm views every day. No worries mate, no worries!