Daisy and the Milkmaid

This milkmaid milks her cows the old-fashioned way in the Italian Alps. When we asked her why she said, “because Daisy freezes up if attached to machines.”

Daisy the Cow hit the jackpot. Not only does she munch delectable Alpine grass and clover all summer long at a sunny 7000 feet above sea-level, but she also gets solicitous care.

We bought some of Daisy’s milk and drank it unpasteurized like the milkmaid suggested we should. It was warm and tasted faintly of butter and ricotta.

Meanwhile, on the crest of the mountain, another 1000 feet up, twenty or so young steers—the ‘dry’ animals as the milkmaid called them—grazed, untended and untethered in a world of blue and green and gold. In a week, they will be moved to another peak. And then, in the fall, their freedom comes to an end. They’ll be brought down and taken to market and sold.


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