It’s no secret that kids raised in the Australian bush are a unique breed. If you’re a farm kid yourself, we’ve compiled just some of the reasons you’re part of a special bunch.
1. You’ll be skeptical about the concept of indoor pets
Never let it be said that you don’t like animals, they’re great. But they exist in the following (descending) hierarchy: humans; working animals; edible animals; others.
An animal’s place in that hierarchy dictates its proximity to the house, but only humans should make it past the verandah.
To disrupt this order would be a sin against nature – upending the separation between man and beast… well, that’s how you feel anyway.
2. You understand that different rules apply to ‘paddock language’
Sometimes the language of polite society can’t adequately convey the frustration of a bogged airseeder or a recalcitrant mob of sheep.
That’s where ‘paddock language’ comes in. Farm kids quickly learn that words hurled at working dogs in the sheepyards can’t always be used in front of Grandma.
3. You consider John Deere and Case IH desireable toy brands
A decent part of your childhood play area was probably a scaled down commercial farming enterprise, complete with a tractor and perhaps even a set of offsets or a chaser bin.
You had it made if your fake farming gear was branded with the name of a real machinery company. And if you stayed on the land as an adult, this was probably the start of a costly addiction to red or green paint.
4. You know to observe a moment’s silence at 12.50pm each day
Radios in farm houses, tractors and Toyotas across the country are tuned to the ABC at midday for The Country Hour.
The marketing geniuses at the ABC save the best till last, with the market report bringing up the close of the show. Farm kids know well that the market report is a time for silence – a silence that lasts between 5 minutes and 5 hours, depending on the latest price for weaners at Dubbo saleyards.
5. The greatest party you’ve ever been to was probably in a woolshed
If you call Double Bay home, you might not think sheep manure and shearing paraphernalia make for a good party. You’d be wrong.
The classic woolshed party is a right of passage for farm kids, allowing parents to rest easy knowing that nothing of real value can be broken.