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CLAYTON RYE

By Staff | Mar 9, 2012

I am seeing those first welcome signs of spring. The sun is rising earlier and setting later than I remember it doing last December.

And here comes daylight savings time next weekend. Here we go on that silly exercise we do in the spring and undo in the fall.

It is something that the politicians dreamed up where an hour is taken away each morning and given back later in the day and is called “savings.” It makes as much sense as borrowing our way to prosperity, which the politicians also believe can be done.

If it is such a great idea, let’s leave it in place all year, especially during the winter when the days are short and we could use the so-called extra daylight.

It would be a relief if it was eliminated completely, but that is not going to happen very soon, if at all.

I will give it the minute of grousing it deserves and then move on to other more important things, like thinking about the crop year ahead, something I actually do have some control over.

But then, with me in semi-retirement and my son making much of the daily decisions, I do not have as much control of that like I used to, either.

Actually, I can not complain about that as I want to see this farm move into the capable hands of my son and this is the time to do just that.

An orderly transition is much better than a crash program due to some calamity when decisions are forced and not given the time they deserve to consider the long-term consequences.

This is like a relay race where the baton is passed from the weary runner (me) to the fresh runner (my son) who is eager to advance the baton to the next runner while the weary runner (me, again) stops running, puts his head down, and catches his breath, while the new runner and baton disappear down the track.

Our handoff of the baton is not complete yet, but is getting closer. My fingers have not completely let go of it yet, but that time of completely letting go becomes more imminent as the months go by.

My son is getting impatient and I tell him to have some faith and that his time of saying he makes all the decisions and signs all the checks is not that far away.

My dad and uncle never completely let go of their farms until they died when both were in their 80s

It did work out eventually for me, but waiting to be completely in charge until you are over 50 years old is not easy. My son needs to be in charge while in his 30s and we can do that.

I am already watching from the sidelines as crops are planted and future plans are being considered using methods I have not done, but I trust my son’s judgment.

That is part of letting go.

So here comes spring and all the good things that a new season represents, including something as meaningless, mindless, and pointless as daylight savings time.

A farmer, even a retired one, still has to have something to complain about.

Rye is a Farm News staff writer and farmer from Hanlontown. Reach him by e-mail at crye@wctatel.net.

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