So we searched how to fix it and unfortunately it would cost more to repair the motor than to buy another one new. And even a refurbished one would cost several hundred dollars, which we don’t have. With heavy hearts we continued to milk the girls by hand twice a day. Our fingers ached as we squeezed and squeezed for 45 minutes twice a day.
But as we sat there in the cold, facing our goat’s back ends, we realized it wasn’t nearly as bad as we’d imagined it to be. It was the same amount of time to milk by hand as it was to use a machine (and now even less time). Our cleaning time was down to a few minutes instead of taking 20 minutes of scrubbing tubes and nobs. We could hear each other easily without the blaring motor running. The girls weren’t fighting in their stanchions either. Before they would bite each other’s ears and steal food from their neighbors. Now they sit quietly and eat their own food without fighting. In fact, I don’t cringe when I see the clock nearing 4:00 now. Instead, I look forward to sitting down with the girls and having that intimate time.
And as an added bonus, we have been able to see who our big producers are. Who isn’t making the cut in milk amounts and that is helping us plan for the coming months on the farm. So what had started out as a terrible tragedy to an already struggling dairy has turned out to be a blessing instead. We decided to let the old motor sit in the back of the parlor and collect dust for now, and we’ll let our gigantic electric bill take a break for a while too.
Many times on the farm we try something and it trips up. We can never seem to sprint up the hills we have before us, but when we stop and sit down for a bit and look back, we can often see the distance we’ve traveled and it’s usually more than we ever expected.