Thursday, May 26, 2011

The next three days ...

So today we have been preparing for the concours des vaches(competition for the best cows). I may have forgot to mention that there is a "cow competition" for the next three days. The family is showing 5 cows tomorrow morning in Saint-Brieuc, France- about an hour away. However, we cannot leave until the competition ends(Sunday). Pierrick and Veronique will stay here while Celine, Brieu, myself, and a past intern will travel to show their cows. Of course Pierrick and Veronique are coming to watch, but they still have farm work to do- the pigs and cows don't feed themselves! Knowing that I am showing a cow for a potential trophy, I can only say thank you Chad (my Advisor) for recommending Penn State's Dairy Expo. Otherwise, I would have absolutely no idea what I am to do and would be an absolute basket case. You see, this farm has won many trophies in the past and they're definitely not about to stop. For those out of the loop, I trained and showed a cow this past April at Penn State. However, the showing here is different. The way it works here is that the cows are completely shaved and are judged on appearance and milk production. Based on the judge's decision, the cow that has the best milk production and "anatomy"- i.e. flat back, proper stance, etc- wins. (But be aware that there are many rounds for the many cows. Hence the three days.) We will be sleeping in a tent for the duration of the competition and have packed a crate of food. I will not be able to contact anyone until my return. Nevertheless, expect many pictures and quite possibly a long blog post!

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