Both parents are from Wisconsin and we bi-annually took the Wis. trek for vacation.
My Mom grew up in the "city" and my Dad the "farm". Of course, the "city" is not exactly a metropolis - but it was to me as a kid. And the farm seemed like it was a million acres to me.
We visited at both places half at each Grandparents' - but dairy was in abundance at the farm. Grandpa had a true working farm, including chickens, pigs, guinea hens (strange birds), a lot of barn cats, a mean dog named Kojak and of course, milking cows.
Milking was a job that you did every day, twice a day, regardless of the weather or day. period. I liked to help Grandpa and was fascinated with the animals, barn and the milkhouse. I can still smell that milkhouse smell of fresh milk.
Naturally, that milk was not consumed only as milk. Grandpa kept what he needed and sold the rest to cheese factories. My dad's best friend worked at his family's cheese factory nearby. And the smell there... it was heaven. Fresh cheese curds rock. I knew that very early on. We were always treated with the best cheese products and we would take it home in a huge cooler to our home.
To this day, the cheese factory is one of my favorite memories of Wisconsin. I can't help but compare all cheeses to this cheese. The factory is still thriving and it is a treat to have this cheese now at my home - we have 3 kinds in the fridge right now from Christmas. To break out a brick of cheese like this is the very best! Crackers not needed.