My family has the darnedest time figuring out what exactly it is I do for a living.
I grew up in a small town, moved away after college, and don’t get home very often. So on the rare occasions I go back for weddings or funerals, I often stand to the side and amusingly watch my father, a retired farmer, get asked by former neighbors and old friends what his two daughters grew up to be.
My sister has it easy. “Well the oldest one’s a lawyer,” Dad will say with a big grin. And then he’ll go on to talk about how she owns her own law firm in Milwaukee and how she helps people who’ve been discriminated against at their jobs. He might even describe her latest case, or talk about a big company she just sued. My sister is a very good attorney.
“Oh, isn’t that nice,” the little grayed hair ladies will say, bobbing their heads and clucking approvingly. And then, inevitably, the question will come: “And what about your youngest – what does she do?”
And that’s when the eyebrows furrow, the eyes squint, and the look of confusion starts.
A slow inhale. A slower exhale.
Read all of Jeanne Carpenter’s thoughtful musings on her “profession” via Cheese Underground: Growing Cheesemakers.