Better Get Used To It


The days are longer, but with a more-than-commensurate quota of tasks to fill them, so they actually feel shorter. Penny and I have been picking away at the siding, and next year’s firewood, and pulling cars out of ditches. Sometimes, not even our cars. The boys are on a multi-night, deep woods camping trip, and in their absence, it feels too quiet. In their absence, I feel older in a way that’s not entirely comfortable. Well. I guess I better get used to it.

Not much to say, but I did want to share this story I wrote about someone I like and respect a whole lot. I hope you enjoy it. Also, check out the behind-the-scenes photos… they’re amazing.


20 thoughts on “Better Get Used To It”

  1. What a great story. It does remind me of all the James Herriot books, which I have read several times over the past 40+ years. Time to read them again.

  2. You’ll never “get used to it” and you’ll look back, as I’m sure you do now, at the parenting years missing them. The good news is your children bring you grandchildren to make more memories with.

  3. Great story, Ben. Wonderful detail and I’m sure super interesting to spend so much time with Tom. Loved seeing Simpson’s Farm in there. My childhood best friend and I (next door neighbors growing up) parted ways as young adults, life taking us in different directions, only to reunite after we were both married. As it turned out, she married a Simpson nephew, and I married a guy from the other side of RT 5. Still can’t believe the odds of that… what a small world.

  4. Great article on Tom Stuwe! I read it from his daughter Sarah’s post on facebook last night. She and I are good friends from UVM and she married my fraternity brother Rich Pashby. I met Tom once while he was cycling and had no idea the work he puts in on a day to day basis. I enjoyed the extra behind the scene photos as well. Great work Ben, keep it up!!

  5. I’ve known so many vets! My favorites: Dr. Leroy Burnham of Willows, California and Dr. Erik Hansen of Pleasanton. The young vets are so eager and diligent but can they get to be old vets soon? The old vets are the best. I always said Dr. Burnham was like Dr. Po on Animal Planet. He drove around for miles, like you said, in an old beat up Volkswagen.

  6. Your awareness of how different it feels without those young spirits signals your capacity to make hay while their bright suns are shining. And GREAT to see “Yankee” still avails itself of your immense literary gift. (My son Scott alerted me to this article last night.)

  7. Great great piece! I have known Tom and the Stuwes for as long as I can remember – as a vet and friends of the family. I always love catching a sighting of his truck in town. Thanks, Ben. Well done.

  8. Great story. I read James H As a child and re-read them as an adult and now, I want to read them again. You wrote about Tom S with great empathy and honesty. I wonder, did you learn any animal husbandry tips? Great photos as well by Mark Fleming.

  9. What a wonderful article! Large animal vets are a rare breed and becoming more so all the time. Most around here exclusively treat horses so it falls upon the owner to treat most other animals (which is not necessarily a bad thing to a certain degree.)
    Not sure if anyone else saw this and don’t remember Ben passing this along. I was at the dentist this morning with my boys waiting longer than usual. I picked up the February copy of Popular Mechanics sitting on the table (the only thing I thought would capture their interest) and read a great article about digging a well. I completed it thinking, “That was great. I wonder who wrote it?” Well, guess who?!

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