One of my friends bought Little T a DVD of Tractor Ted for his birthday last year & he loves it. Another favourite in our household are the ‘Harvest’ programmes that were on the BBC at the end of the summer, so it’s fair to say he has more than a passing interest in farming, which Mr T’s family are very pleased with.
Little T goes to my parents-in-law every Wednesday afternoon, after pre-school. They are dairy farmers &, as such, have very specific gender roles within the households – Granny does the domestic things, while Grandad does the more physical & demanding jobs. Little T often goes on to the farm to help with the jobs, such as feeding the calves or prentending to help with many other tasks – I’m not sure if he is more of a help than a hinderance sometimes, but they would never tell him that & are definitely encouraging the passion he seems to have for farming & all things farm-related. He can tell you more than I could about the workings of the farm, the animals, the machinery & can tell you what make a tractor is based on it’s colours. He waxes lyrical on the jobs he’s done on the farm most Wednesday evenings when we go to pick him up.
A couple of weeks ago I arrived to pick him up & he was very excitedly telling me that he’d been to the farm & that the vet had been there. The vet had checked some of the animals over, as the vet does in the Tractor Ted DVD & he was so animated whilst telling me that she’d been to see a poorly cow & what she had done, it was lovely to see.
After he’d regaled me with his tale of the vet, Granny said ‘Would you like to be a vet when you’re a big boy?’ & he thought about it for a couple of seconds before saying ‘No’. When I said ‘What do you want to be when you’re a big boy then?’, I could not have prepared myself for his answer & it was the single-most amusing thing I’d heard in months:
He looked directly at my traditional, old-fashioned, father-in-law & replied ‘a princess’.