The History of Exercise in Rural Minnesota
I ran across this link and I realized I had forgotten all of these things we did to keep fit over the years. My mind drifted back to high school Phy. Ed. We'd swing our arms in circles, do jumping jacks, rotate our neck, do a few knee bends and then run around the gym like nuts. Any of this topped the dreaded day when the gym teacher introduced something new ... square dancing! With the girls' class! It was hard enough talking to a girl, let alone hold her hands and do-si-do and swing her round and round. To make it worse, we had to pick out a girl to dance with.
In my day, just being seen talking to a girl started all kinds of rumors. Ooh, he must like her or she must like him. Thankfully I was on good terms with the neighbor girl and it helped that she was ugly, too. No one would think I'd have a crush on her. I do realize there's a chance she may have been thinking the same thing as I was. Most of us boys would just walk through the motions and count the minutes until class was over.
After school I'd hop on the bus. Run to the house change clothes and head to the barn and grab a pitch fork and lift pounds and pounds of calf manure up over the stall wall and into the wheelbarrow. Then hop over the wall and grab a shovel and scoop up more manure out of the gutters. Then taking a deep breath, push the 100 pounds or so of wet manure down the aisle and out the door and up a plank and dump it in the pile and then head back to the barn and repeat the process. Then push the feed cart and dump the feed into the mangers, go to the door and open it. Then race from stanchion to stanchion locking the cows in before they'd decide they'd rather be outside instead. Scramble up the ladder to the hay mow and pull out the 30- to 40-pound bales and drop them down the chute and race down the ladder and spread the hay out for the cows.
A quick supper and then start carrying pails of milk to the milk house followed a repeat performance of pitching manure.
I'm sure glad I had a gym class in school to keep me fit.