My first hour: five high flyers expose their morning routines
A daily phone call from India, a tough workout at the track, or a journey to the milking parlors? Six people tell Candice Pires what gets them out of bed in the morning
The dairy farmer: Paul Tompkins wakes at 4.30 am. The first thing on his mind is cows
How have the kine got on overnight? Thats the question that aftermaths me up at 4.30 am every morning. We have 200 kine that we milk and a further 200 young stock, so somethings usually happened.
As soon as I get out of bed, Im at work. We live above our farm in Yorkshire and I dont have time to waste because theres a full day ahead. My clothes are in a pile in the bedroom and I pull them on as quick as I can. I head downstairs and slip on overalls, waterproofed, wellies and a hat if its cold. From bed to fully dressed takes me six or seven minutes. To avoid waking my belly, I dont drink or eat.
Every day when I step outside my back entrance, the farm seems a little bit different. In the summer it can be glorious with the swallows darting in and out of the passageway and over my head. In the winter it can be so crisp and cold that all the cobwebs have frozen.
I promptly get the milking parlor ready for operation, then I go to the shed, open the door and call: Morning, girls! Milking period. I love find them every morning. Kine really like routine and theyre always ready. If Im just four minutes late, there will be a queue at the barn door. They walk through to the parlour. I know who will come first, so if theres one that Im expecting and she doesnt arrive, Im already worrying. I have someone help me with the milking, but theres an agreement that we dont actually talk until breakfast.
The cows are milked in groups of 12 and are in there for 10 to 15 minutes. It takes me about 3 hour to milk all of them and then I do it again in the evening. I do the same thing for every cow, every day which makes them feel safe and secure. For me, the repeating is nearly therapeutic. I cast my mind to other things that are happening in the working day. Theres a lot of day so its important to not dwell on problems. Once Ive cleaned the equipment, its 8.30 am. The infants appear outside the parlour door on their way to school and we say goodbye.
I head to our kitchen with some milk straight from the kine udder to chill it. I put it on my cereal and drink a glass. It tastes so much richer than bought milk.
I never wake up and think: I wish today was different. Following the same routine allows me to be efficient.
The chef: Asma Khan wakes up every morning with telephone calls from her mum
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