The weekend was all about hay, all hay, all day, on all the screens of this wild rural cinema.
The clack and the rattle of the elevators was nearly constant, driven in their duty by electric motors and the sassy "new" Massy, which works the nuts as the guys say.
All was punctuated of course by the usual run of flat tires and wonky elevators jamming up and all that sort of stuff.
The mows are getting high, making it harder to unload each one, but for all the extra effort involved, that is nothing but a good thing. One more field of first cutting, then a short break to give the equipment a little shakedown, and back at it with second cutting.
Having our boy home moved it all at Caesar speed...if you read the old Mary Stewarts you'll remember that term. In fact on Saturday everybody got into the act, including Peggy and her whole family.
You should have seen her tromping back and forth to the barn in her little rubber chore boots. She was cute for sure, but mostly she was determined. Stomp, stomp, stomp, over to see Unca Alan and Pop Pop. Back to the house to check on Nana. Back to the barn. Back to the house. I think she wore her mama out.
Me, I fed them. With my messed up thumbs I'm not much use in the haymow, but I can still cook. The good earth here generously provided beef, freshly dug potatoes, newly picked green beans, squash, onions, garlic, and the herbs with which to prepare them. I fed the hay crew sandwich steaks with peppers and onions (frozen a couple of weeks earlier from one of Alan's grill extravaganzas) on Saturday and beef stew on Sunday.
A big thumbs up on the thumbs thing. They have hurt for years...since I started milking cows when I was twenty-something. I laid it to milking cows...who wouldn't? They take turns ouching and between that and decades of guitar playing I have become pretty much ambidextrous. In fact the left one is worst just now because I've been babying the right, and I miss it because the right one made me something of a lefty if you get what I mean.
I was whining to my dear aunt who brought my dear uncle to visit one day last week....or maybe it was the other way around.....but they came anyhow and we had a great visit. She told me it was probably tendinitis, instead of the arthritis I'd been blaming it on for decades.
I read up on that, saw there was a brace for it, and Alan got me one on Saturday before the dew was off the hay so they could work. It worked. Stupid things still hurt but there is a lot of relief involved. Yay! And maybe it would help if I avoided pulling amaranth that is higher than my head and nearly as thick as my ankles....that was dumb and I knew it when I was doing it, but what the hey...the onions are all harvested.
On Sunday afternoon, when the elevator quit clacking and the sun began to sink over the heifer barn, our boy headed back to a different kind of wild...that of the dangerous, lurking swamp of a certain big city. Peggy pressed her nose against the screen door, waving bye bye and was sad. We all were......but he was gone, leaving behind a trail of hay dust and good coffee.....