I spent a lot of time in this old barn. Helping my dad with hog chores, scooping oats, stacking hay... not always willingly. As a child it could seem pretty cruel always being needed on the farm, knowing my town friends were off at the pool or up to other mischief. But it gave me so much that I couldn't see back then. Work ethic, character, connection to my family heritage, and the chance to spend countless hours side by side with my father. I may have complained a little bit too much at times back then, but I'd give anything to go back. I wouldn't trade a single moment for the world.
This photo, like memories tend to be, is a little bittersweet. I can't go back to that barn anymore. It blew down in a windstorm about ten years ago. But when I close my eyes it's still there, a fixture of my childhood sitting at the end of our yard, and a symbol of lessons that live in me still. Photo © copyright by Josh Meier.