Marta, when she grows up

Malga Ritorto, Madonna di Campiglio

“My brothers and I get up at five o’clock every day. There are four of us and each of us does something, except Matteo, who is still very small and has just learned to walk. Leonardo helps our dad with the wood, Francesca does the housework and, as I am the oldest, I help out with the cows: I go and fetch them in the meadows early in the morning and I take them inside to milk them together with my dad. There are 65 cows and it takes us almost two hours to milk them all. Then we send them outside again until the evening, when we bring them back into the cowshed to milk them once again. Each cow has a unique personality, just like humans. All animals have a different personality. My favourite cow is called Zortea and she has a tuft of red hair on her head.

And this here is Whisky, who is the best dog we have. If only he could speak! It would be extremely difficult for us if we didn’t have him because we don’t just have cows, we also have goats, pigs, geese and two calves which are rather sick right now.

Stories on the Dolomites: Marta, the small mountain dairy herdswoman

"Next year I will start high school and I will attend the agricultural school: when I grow up I want to live here"

Then, once a week, other children come here with the “educational farm” project and we teach them how to milk farm animals.

In summer, the whole family is here at Malga Ritorto and we also have other people helping us because there’s a lot of work. However, in winter we stay in our home down in the town and we children go to school. Next year, I’ll start going to high school and I’ve chosen to study agriculture because, when I grow up, I want to do what I’m doing now.”

Written by Alessandro Cristofoletti

Published on 06/06/2023