Living in Tents and Milking Goats

A few years ago I quit my job and moved into a tent in the Ozark Mountains to live with complete strangers named Jeannie and Neill…and I would do it again.

I hiked 3 miles in ice and snow with all of my belongings on my back to get to a place I had never been, to meet people I had never seen.

I was a newbie to living off the land, and hesitant around the animals. So, of course I jumped at any opportunity to embarrass myself in front of the other volunteers. I mean, we had to laugh at something so why not offer myself as sacrifice?

During my second stay (yes, I’ve lived their multiple times) I somehow got talked into being the “milker” of the goats. Did I mention was too scared to touch the goats before this? Now I had agreed to yank and squeeze on their tits. SERIOUSLY?

Jeannie and Neill spent an afternoon training me; their new milker, and it nearly took the whole afternoon, poor Moonbeam. It took me a while but I eventually got over the initial ‘oh my god I’m touching a goat’ and learned to love the process as much as I HAD loved watching Moonbeam from a far.

There is something so beautiful about living a peaceful life in nature…with nature, and something so liberating about having the ability to survive off the land on your own. I’ve always been humbled by nature, but living in unison with the earth and all of it creatures definitely taught me a new form of respect.

Anyway, here’s any awkward video that was taken of my first ever goat-milking attempt. Remember I lived in a tent; we didn’t have running water or electricity, so you may think I look like a mess. #sorrynotsorry