Orpha, at the nursery Christmas party Monday night.
Now in her mid-eighties, Orpha has worked for the nursery since the year I was born, 1964.
Orpha knows hard work. To this day, she milks a couple of cows, keeps chickens, feeds her geese, peacocks, ducks, sheep, goats--and then, in the spring, comes to transplant seedlings in the greenhouse. After work, chores. In the summer, she puts up hay. She can fix a tractor and then go in and fix a meal.
"You just do it!" she says with a shrug.
For a while, she could barely walk--but two new knees fixed her up good.
Orpha is the last of our employees to have worked for Grandpa and Grandma. She is also one of the last of dying breed: farm women who did everything, I mean everything, without much reward and without complaint.