I love me some Friday night junk auctions and traipsing around the flea market on a Saturday morning. I get a kick out of finding something old to become new-to-me. However, farm auctions don’t give me the same feeling of satisfaction. Sure, they are auctions, and the highest bidder wins, but that’s the only person who wins (in my mind).
A few years ago my dad quit farming and sold out. That cold January day was one of the hardest in my short time on Earth. I took the day off work to stand out in the cold and support my family, only to watch the stuff he had worked so hard for be sold for dirt cheap. I haven’t been to another farm auction since.
This Saturday my Godparents are having a farm auction of their own. They’ve retired and built a new house in Manhattan to be near their children and grandchildren. I’m not sure if I want to go, but Mom suggested I go with her. I have always seen the auctions as a bad thing. They signal the end of an era, the end of a farm, the end of a way of life.
Maybe that’s not the right way to feel about them. They could very well be a place for a young farmer to get his feet wet in the agriculture business. They could let someone get a piece of equipment for a decent price and not suffer the mark-up a dealer would stick to them. They are a part of life.