I don’t know what took me to that place, up the yard.
Perhaps it was the time of the year, or the rumble of distant milk trucks.
But something led me to the old milking stall, the stall of dreams, where hands were soon clutching a milk cluster, the way I used to do long ago.
“You still got it kid!” I said to myself, as a tear rolled down, and I motioned putting the cluster onto a cows udder. But of course there was no cow, only a silly, worn out man in an empty stall, holding an old cluster and dreaming of days when milked flowed like wine into the tank.
It’s over a decade now since I hung up the kick bar, waved a fond goodbye to the mastitis tube, and said au revoir to Cheno Unction.
I left it all behind, to seek my fortune in pastures new. Sadly, as it turned out, pastures new were riddled with docks, thistles and ragwort.
Yerra, my misery has been well documented here over the years.
Suffice to say, turning my back on the cow was the greatest mistake I ever made, and for a man who has made an all merciful number of slip-ups, that is saying something.
If I had stayed with the cow, I would surely be a millionaire at this stage, with a blonde under my arm and a Lamborghini under my arse.
In the words of Marlon Brando, “I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender. I coulda been somebody”.
So was it any wonder then, that the tears trickled down, as my shaking hand gripped onto the past. I’m the greatest fool in the world. And in a world where not even Brexit can be solved, that is saying something.
But I ask you, is there still time? Am I still in with a chance to make a return to the game? Is there still one more fight left in the old dog? Well, according to Michael Flatley, there is.
Anyhow, he is the devil entirely for hoisting up messages of praise, promise and possibility. Of rising the morale to new heights. And in fairness to Michael, if the messages are coming from a guy like him, you tend to straighten yourself up and take heed.
For he’s the man who made more over the past 20 years from a snap of his heels, than 200 burly men have made in a whole lifetime of shovelling, piking and hauling.
Anyhow, his last pronouncement read, “Stop being afraid of what could go wrong, and start being excited about what could go right.” If there was ever a message to encourage a fellow to get back onto the saddle, surely this is it.
The message I’m taking from Lord Flatley is that I could go back milking cows. I could!
What could possibly go wrong with the venture, and I nearing 50?
Well, for starters, I suppose I could die.
That must surely be the greatest risk at my stage in life. For, a bit like taking up with a feisty lady and you in the twilight years, the excitement might prove too much.
Then again, it might not.
Remember Hugh Hefner lived to be 91.
And in farming terms, a fellow a year shy of 50 is but a gorsoon.
By golly, Lord Flatley, 2019 could well be the year that Lehane goes back on the milk, and I stop being afraid of what might go wrong.