Fort Collins Conservation District

Ron Neher

Green Grass Is Where You Find It

By: Ron Neher, Natural Resources Conservation Service, Retired

Probably one of the most common sayings of all time is the statement that the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence. Obviously more opinion than fact, - the statement can feel very true and factual during certain occurrences in one’s life.

The statement was probably derived from a scene of a cow wanting the lush forage on the other man’s property rather than in the field she was destined to graze in. Think about it, - a cow stuck within the boundaries of a fence and forced to accept the opportunities, - or lack of, - of what she can find to eat. Man can relate in many instances.

I guess the whole thing in the mind of the cow is pure contentment. Being a contented cow is a goal in the life of every bovine species I have met. Our milk cow we had when I was a boy back home had that goal and we helped her meet that goal. We all benefited. To think about it, every farm species we had, - cows, sheep, ducks, chickens, peacocks, rabbits, pigeons, and who know what else, - all had a goal of contentment. We tried to keep them happy and I believe we succeeded. Rarely did they try to leave home.

People are obviously different than a cow or another kind of animal and don’t exist under the same conditions as farm animals. We have choices which we have made and can make to move from one field to another, so to speak, and improve our way of life, economic condition, or some other chosen comfort.

This cliché, of greener grass somewhere else than in our own view or possession, is nothing new. People have had this issue probably long before the cow encountered the idea. I suppose some cave man coveted another man’s cave a long time ago. He probably liked the entrance better or maybe it was closer to a stream, close to something more attractive, or just bigger. Whatever it was, I can imagine that confrontations probably occurred as they do today. Let your mind wander.

Contentment is a good thing if you can get a handle on it. If you think about it, the lack of contentment can hold one back from a certain level of success or achievement which would in fact make them happier and better off. If you aren’t contented try to do something to obtain that green object, - whatever it is. Whatever you are eyeing as green might require relocation, more education, or some other life changing activity.

If you continue to see green and want to do no more than just want it, - get used to what you have. Some people think they will be happier in a different set of circumstances. Oftentimes reality proves otherwise. Sometimes people just need to be content with what they have and forget about their neighbor’s field. You might try rose colored glasses.