Friday morning, I drove to Elgin, OK. Some will say that is the capitol of the Oklahoma FFA. After seeing their new ag building, it would be hard to argue.
I piled into a vehicle with John Lastly and Cody McElhaney. We headed to DFW and caught a plane. Yes, we had to wear face masks. We landed in Sacramento, CA on Friday evening. Here is a quick word from the now wise. Just because you are in California does NOT mean that you should rent the convertible Mustang. John nor I are large people. However, Cody is 6’2″ish by 225#ish. It was fun to drive but getting in & out was a chore. Lots of grunts & growls.
Also, we weren’t prepared for curfews and almost no dining in. Oh well. No matter. After putting our names on the hour & a half Texas Roadhouse wait list, getting turned down from at least 4 other dining places, a bit of racial profiling and we still ended up back at the Texas Roadhouse for steaks, salads and biscuits. Wait? What? Who in the hell would call those heavenly morsels a biscuit. Cody, that’s who! And he likes those “biscuits”. Wisely, he got several to go. They came in handy the next day.
First stop..Galt, CA. Home of J&J Livestock. Excellent stop. I could write a lot about a quick visit. Excellent ag family. Each has their role and their favorites. But they ALL work! Goats, sheep, chickens, a few cattle, alfalfa, several ACRES of garden, vegetable stand, etc. This firm understands all aspects of this industry. Sales, breeding, presentation, showmanship, service-after-the-sale, feeding, management–all of it. The buck line-up was impressive. Really cool to see a bunch of name brand bucks. It has been a couple of years since I had seen Dirty Rain. And yet there he was, in excellent shape for an old dude. IQ is a unique specimen. Cool looking, impeccable structure & build with plenty of muscle. And Split Decision has the absolute most bad-ass set of horns that I have ever seen on a goat. I mentioned a European mount when his time comes. Justin made it clear that it would be a full head and cape mount. I couldn’t argue. They don’t sell juice often on these bucks, but you might want to pay attention when they do.
As good as the stock and the adults were to deal with…..that pair of kids were the highlight. They are going to be fun to watch grow up in the stock show world. They are an integral part of the operation, aren’t afraid to work or talk stock. WICKED AWESOME!! Excellent program. I’m very glad that they had time to let us take a look. The Burns family are legit.
Then, we folded into that convertible Mustang and headed south. The central valley of California is one of the very best ag producing regions in the history of the world. Flat, fertile and irrigated. I’ve never seen anything like it before. Almonds ( some use the L, some don’t), walnuts, peaches, cherries, corn, alfalfa, veggies, rice, etc, etc, etc. We drove that Mustang like it was rented. We made it near Porterville and followed the directions that Jim Brem had sent via text. We made the turn, found the green dumpster and drove through the orange grove. Yes, an orange grove. The Brem Livestock firm raises goats in an area surrounded by citrus groves. I love orange juice!!!!!! My favorite drink….you would be wrong if you said anything other than orange juice.
Yes, Tyson handed me an orange the size of a grapefruit. Kyle handed me his knife to start the peeling process. And then….oh, oh, oh my, oh… the juices, the flavor…oh, oh. I told them that a person should probably be naked to eat something that good! I have no appropriate words to describe standing near a goat pen, eating a fresh orange. And according to them, this wasn’t a really good orange. Pfft! Better than anything that I’ve had.
Once again, a great family unit working to make goats better. I wasn’t expecting a couple hundred head of does but they had em. And it was a good looking set of working females. Very few horns. Trust me, I keyed into that fact and the value of polled does. Once again, the buck line-up was impressive. Actually, scary good. The Brem firm has been studying genetics and working to make wicked goats. And they have taken the art of naming bucks to a whole nother level. I was like, wait, what, oh my. Legendary. I’m not sure if they offer juice on what they have, but if they do…if they do…you might want to click that mouse a time or three.
Here is what I learned this weekend. This California deal is legit. Everybody should spend a few dollars and a few days to make a trip like this. I saw some really cool things, talked to some wicked livestock families, enjoyed my travel companions, did not get hit a legendary eating joint, did see excellent stock, learned some stuff, should have rented a Cadillac, will now plan ahead for eating when getting ready to fly in today’s current climate and Buc-cees bbq sandwiches are damn sure worth $5.99.
Most importantly, I realized a few things.
-Like, how lucky I am to get to do something like this. Duke and Tammy took care of the home-front. Thank you.
-I am an addict. There was very little beer. As always, no drugs. Fresh fruit that felt like a drug. And I get amped when dealing with great families and excellent livestock.
-And you can call them hot rolls, the best hot rolls ever, heavenly, perfect….no matter, Texas Roadhouse hot rolls with that cinnamon butter smeared all over them are NOT biscuits!!!!! Somehow, I don’t think that I made a dent in Cody Mac’s vocabulary. No matter, this was a quick yet fun trip and I look forward to the next one.
And I have still yet to meet somebody that has/had the rona. IDK.