I fulfilled a lifelong ambition this evening and managed to milk a cow. The joy. It was my second attempt. A dismal performance the day before dented my somewhat inflated confidence. In fairness, I have to say that it is bloody hard to milk a cow. The only thing that urged me on to try again was the delicious smell that lingered on my hands – a mixture of warm cream and, well, shite … of the fresh, sweet manure variety. Rather like a teenager who has been kissed by her favourite pop star I was reluctant to wash. Having practised good hygiene I was delighted to find that the smell remained and I spent the rest of the evening cupping my hands over my nose and inhaling deeply.
I’m aware that not everyone shares my enthusiasm and I’m reminded of a night a few years ago in Dublin’s Chapter One restaurant. Liam and I were holding a Cabot and Co dinner and we opened a bottle of Beaucastel 1981. It divided the table down the middle. Once the glasses were poured there were those of us who stopped talking and gladly fell into the stink. There were others who pushed the glasses away from their place setting and eventually poured their glasses into ours (result!). One poor soul even had to leave for some air.
Back to the cow. I’ll be returning tomorrow to perfect my technique, which is improving. Maybe I’ll persuade Liam that we should get a cow when we go home. But that’s an udder story… (sorry).