“I guess I am a lot braver than I was when I was younger”
That’s how Poppi explained his decision to try a new cuisine when he came to see our farm for the first time today. For those of you who do not know my Poppi, he is a man of great wisdom and many words. His memory is incredible and even though he will tell you the same story over and over again, it is always the same. He rarely forgets a detail, which is incredible considering he is 94 years old.
About a month ago Poppi lost his incredible wife, Doris Dalisky also affectionately known as nanny. Today would have been their 67th wedding anniversary. To help keep his spirits up my mom offered to take Poppi on a road trip and visit the farm. But first on the way to farm mom took Poppi to lunch at the Enumclaw Sales Pavilion.
The Enumclaw Sales Pavilion is one of my favorite hang outs on Saturday mornings. The Sales Pavilion is a little like taking a step back in time. Every Saturday there is a live band that sings songs of yesteryear that make your boots tap and lips sync. There is also the Branding Iron Cafe that displays all the local cattle brands, a long horn cow head on the wall and a loud mouthed cook who provides the entertainment.
When we arrived we sat down to listen to some tunes and check out the auction. There was a lot of hustle and bustle in the auction ring as they auctioned off chickens, ducks, peacocks, turkeys and doves. I had my eye on a few doves that I thought would be a neat addition to the farm but then lost my patience and went back to the music.
Soon we were all ready for some grub so we sat down to eat. After Poppi got his cup of coffee (in a sexy grandma mug that we teased him about) Mom read the menu to Poppi (he has AR- age related – macular degeneration that he would love to tell you all about if you ever get a chance to ask him) and mentioned that the Sales Pavilion is famously known for their rocky mountain oysters. For you city slickers, rocky mountain oysters are the testicles of young calves (usually removed as a part of the castration process). For whatever reason, Poppi decided that today would be the day he would try rocky mountain oysters for the first time. The waitress told him that they taste a lot like chicken (they are fried after all). After he placed his order I told him about my first rocky mountain oyster experience at the AGR Fraternity in Montana when they hosted the testicle festival. They had Western Underground (Chris Ledoux’s former band) play in the big barn in the fairgrounds and despite the fact that it was about 15 degrees out I had a ball at the testicle festival (pun totally intended)…and yes I ate the rocky mountain oysters.
Turns out Poppi very much enjoyed his rocky mountain oysters. He said they were quite a bit crispier than he thought but that they did taste a little like chicken. After our meal was done we headed to the farm to show him our new place.
Even though Poppi has a hard time getting around due to his poor eyesight he was able to hang out in the barn for a while and meet Mama and Charlotte. He also spent some time telling Ross all about his experience with AIing (artifically inseminating) cows. He was pretty impressed with how much hay we had stored in the barn and said that we would probably do okay as farmers with this much hay which was nice to hear considering Poppi was a pretty great farmer himself. Poppi also gave us lots of tips about raising sheep (his favorite stock to raise) and milking cows.
Later we headed for the house to take a rest by the fire. All in all it was a great visit. I know Poppi was missing Nanny the whole time, but I am glad he got to come over and see the place. I am so thankful he is still around to share his wisdom and stories. No matter how many times he tells them I still like to hear them and today he taught me a valuable lesson: you are never too old to try new things!