Polonyna (the meadow) is called a mountainous valley in the Carpathians mountain pasture. Herders live there all summer, graze cattle and make cheese. Despite the fact that in general only the shepherds herding sheep are being called shepherds, in the Carpathians under this definition fall also those who graze cows.
Special holiday of Carpathian shepherds
In some areas of the Carpathians there is even a special holiday – “myshannia” – seeing the shepherds to the meadow, which is celebrated in late May – early June. Interestingly, in this day shepherds milk each sheep, and based on the amount of milk yield it is determined on how much cheese and milk each owner can count on. For each cow the owner receives 50 kg of cheese for the whole season from herders.
There are much less valleys with sheep in the Carpathians than with cows, many owners give up their content and move to breeding cows, as these give milk all year round. But, to be honesty, I confess that cheese made from cow’s milk is not inferior to the sheep’s.
There are much less valleys with sheep in the Carpathians than with cows
Shepherds live in the real kolyba. Of course, if we compare this with the newly fashionable hut restaurant of the same name, made to national style – it is like the sky and the earth. In this case, the sky is a shepherd’s hut. If only because it is located deep on the meadow and in the mountains – almost 1700 meters above sea level.
As a rule shepherds are in the meadow to mid-September
Shepherds themselves, taking into account also the herd or flock with them, happen to get to the most distant pastures up till in day time. As a rule shepherds are in the meadow to mid-September.
The most important shepherd is called the deputy (deputat). Yes, that’s really true, exactly the deputy. It can’t get any more folk. The pasture of deputat is about 60-120 cows and all of them are milked in one day. And this thing takes two people.
The process of milking a cow takes about 10-15 minutes.
At first glance, it seems that the milking process generally laborious and long. The process of milking a cow takes about 10-15 minutes. However, only one cow. And if there are 30 of them…
Throughout the Carpathian region cows and horses go freely and graze on their own, although they have huge bells tied to their necks, and sometimes even some pots.