Capturing an Instant

Photos Capturing an Instant in Time: The Family Farm

The family farm for over a hundred years

Robert McKeon Aloe
Nov 24, 2020 · 5 min read

My father’s family immigrated to the US in the mid-1800’s to Michigan from Ireland, mostly Ireland. They were farmers, and my great-great grandfather built the family farm. My grandfather eventually farmed it, and he died in the early 90’s. Since then, the land has been rented, but none of my aunts or uncles farm.

This is a snapshot of the Farm in 2020.

Usually, there have been long gaps in time when I’ve been to the Farm. In this case, I hadn’t been back for a decade. Memories of the Farm as a kid always rush back. It feels like an old family member or a stable home that will never go away, even though I know it isn’t eternal.

My grandma died in October, aged 89. Even though there’s a pandemic, my family protected her from getting sick. They suspected she had cancer, but the doctors said she was too frail for treatment. So I went back for the funeral where everyone wore masks, and I stayed at the Farm. The only family thing we could do was to get together at the Farm because of the sickness. Luckily, we were not responsible for a super-spreader event or any spreading of the disease even though we were at dis-ease.

The barn was always filled with wonder and mystery, in part because it was so dark and old inside. My hay allergies often held me back, but after it was restored, the barn no longer stored hay.

Even the way the light comes through the windows always struck me.

There aren’t any functioning tractors on the farm except this small one, but I still love to drive it. Every time I’m there, I feel my farmer gene bubble up.

In the woods at the edge of the properties, there’s old farm equipment. Back in the day, if they couldn’t sell a machine, they would drag it to the woods. Another snapshot of slow decay.

The property adjacent to us had some farmers harvesting, and I watched with a hint of jealousy.

The field had corn, and the tall stalks hide the world around or even the immediate area. I enjoyed how the barn would hide behind the stalks, and it felt like the world around disappeared.

Of course, there are random things at the farm. A few tractors are in good condition.

The barn has been an enduring memory of my childhood and my family.

My grandpa used to take us. I remember one stormy night, and the lights went out. We sat on the old covered porch as a lightening storm raged outside. It was beautiful to watch. I still remember his huge strong, hands and his warm, loving smile.

Age of Awareness

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Robert McKeon Aloe

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I’m in love with my Wife, my Kids, Espresso, Data Science, tomatoes, cooking, engineering, talking, family, Paris, and Italy, not necessarily in that order.

Age of Awareness

Stories providing creative, innovative, and sustainable changes to the ways we learn | Tune in at aoapodcast.com | Connecting 500k+ monthly readers with 1,200+ authors