My dad’s combine was built in 1975. She’s seen better days. Paint is rusted. Levers are stiff. The soft, yellow seat is long gone. Every year before harvest we all say a little prayer that she doesn’t fall apart and quit us in the middle of the field. She falls somewhere between “antique” and “but she’s paid for!”
And this past year, my kids got to help with milo harvest. Braun rode along with Grandad as they cut the grain. Aside from Grandad not noticing a little helper lowering and raising the header a time or two, things went well.
And Braun still talks about cutting milo with Grandad several months later.
A couple weeks after he helped Grandad with harvest, we passed by a shiny new combine cutting corn on our way to school. I told Braun to look how nice it was.
“No,” he said, “I don’t like it.” I asked him why. His response?
A little grin and the words, “I like Grandad’s.”