Thursday, July 21, 2011

Disappointed, Down But Not Out

The big fair sale was yesterday and all the livestock and hams were auctioned off, one by one. Before the sale each child lined up to have their picture taken with their show animal/ham. It was a day of preparation, mild chaos, and disappointment followed by confusion, anger, and one very sad little girl.

This was some one's idea of a practical joke. You see that ham with the Grand Champion ribbon on it, well, that is Kylee's ham. However, she didn't get Grand Champion...someone switched the ribbons.

We were congratulated by family, friends, and even our own club leader. I also spoke to the head of the livestock division from the Extension office about our winning the Grand Champion ribbon and no one said anything to us or Kylee until picture time--four days later.The sad part is that the head of the livestock division is also in charge of hams but apparently knows nothing about them. I asked simple questions like, "What paper work do we need to fill out to reserve the ham for state?" Her answer: "I don't know." Great leadership and organization.

The really sad part is that they knew about the ribbon switching and didn't fix it or tell us until we confronted them. Nice, right. Get a kid's hopes up, let them believe, then, rip it away. The fact that she didn't get Grand Champion isn't the real issue. Sure, we wanted to win it but she still has a blue ribbon ham and that is just fine by us. The real issue comes from the fact that they made my little girl cry and then had the "well, this stuff happens so just get over it" attitude toward her (one lady actually said that). It wasn't their fault, somehow it was our fault. Please explain that one to me. This is her first year in 4-H and her first time competing in anything--great first experience. Needless to say, my husband marched over to the Extension office and gave them a piece of his mind. They just argued with him. Go figure.

Oh, well. We know we don't have the clout, social status, or the elbow rubbing techniques to turn any heads and get a fair shake in 4-H but we still get the last laugh. No matter what the local yokels say we are still taking that ham to state and my baby still did a fantastic job on her very first country cured ham. We are also the only people taking a ham to state from Audrain county. Now that says something. I'm not sure what it says just yet but it says something.

State fair, here come the Windmann's and we are out for blood. 

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