I've been leaving a few minutes earlier on my ride to work this past week to beat the impending heat. My timing coincided with a herd of dairy cattle that crosses the road from the barn to pasture.
One man opens the fence and prods the cows with a stick to get them moving while the older farmer holds up the traffic.
The farmer used to have 150 head, but sold off 100 cows and land to fund his retirement - a common practice for Vermont's dairy farmers. His son is set up well though, he points out, to continue the business and he is thriving.
As the herd moves by and I dodge the piles of manure on the road, I realize how lucky I am to have a dairy farm along my commute, especially in heavily populated Chittenden county.