We are experiencing an onslaught of fires throughout the Pacific Northwest along with our area, hence this batch’s name. BUT, two days before the scent of the smoke was in the air, we made cheese.

This was an especially memorable make for me as I got to tag along with Joe as he went to the dairy to collect milk. I’ve wanted to join the fairly exclusive club of licensed Milk Haulers – you get a cool card and everything! Imagine being asked for identification and you pull that baby out – impressive!! Uh, back to the story – I’ve wanted to be trained to collect milk for quite some time now and so Thursday was the day. Still fairly clear out, it was a lovely day for both us and the cows. Still warm out but it is summer.

Now the collection process isn’t the difficult portion of the program, it’s backing up the trailer attached truck – at least for me.  So the next week, we had a training session.

Driving around town doing errands pulling an empty 300 gallon milk tank wasn’t too bad and the way that big 18 wheeler trucks turn left comes makes more sense but backing up when you can’t really see what is going on is another thing. Dave, the truck, (named after the friend we got him from) is stick shift so there is a LOT of neutral, emergency brake, open the door, get out and looking. Training ended with me backing the trailer up to the Creamery in order to sanitize for our make the next day. Somehow – it went right after just a few attempts. Feeling pretty good about it and am looking forward to my next go at Dave driving.