The rapture is coming true for Soks today. Came and dirtied my house up for 12 years. Who is gonna bark at 4 am anymore? Did what we could to make it good for him the last couple of months and tonight he was so completely full on the chicken that he (almost) couldn't eat the last piece of ham with the aspirin. But it is time.
So let me know Socks, your choice: someone come here or we go for a car ride.
On the more chipper side, we found the car back after my brother and I had celebrated his birthday. Ma was none too please when I told her it would take a while before she could go to Loutre. Smack dab in the middle of the field, spun out. Nothing a chain and tractor can't fix. And so that is the new rule: no disking until the driveway is dry or you can drive anywhere at night without lights. I found out that Dylan and I can have a good game of chess, which is welcome since we'll have to look at each other with the rains and all.
(oh, that chicken that Ma made was just fine.)
Update: Soks decided to stay home. On his last walk he marked every tree of his kingdom one more time and then it was time to go and meet Rosie again. Tonight the coyotes will howl.
Odds and ends
The big news first: it hasn't rained for 40 minutes.
Oh, and today is the last day before judgement day. Bummer.
I wonder if those people will be happy that they are wrong ?Susan has left the farm in search of a greener pasture. So when my mother arrived the day before yesterday she could move right on into her own habitat. As of this morning she had herself installed on the front porch of the mobile home, cup of coffee, 40 minutes of sunshine, a smoke, a puzzle book and hummingbird feeders. The good life as it were. Brother Jan is coming over tonight, on his birthday. The cleaning fairy went into overdrive and suffered a burnout in my house. Farm wise there is nothing happening: too wet to hill potatoes, or to till or to plant or to weed. So to liven things up I thought I put this photo of Tater as a young kid on the couch inhere. Later gater.
Got me some scales in the mail today. The wonders of modern life, you stroke some keys, someone some where does the same thing and next thing you know thee UPS driver shows up with nice card board boxes. He does his thing and some more stroking and next thing you know I am caressing two scales. 't Was a good stroking week alright, don't hurt no one.
The point behind scales is to keep things in a balance: weight of green against paper weight of green. Them ya scales are pretty nifty, they have a memory for prices and add up as you go, just like us humans. I have this saying on the wall, which I really like: What I gave I have, what I kept I lost. Very true for me in the grand scheme of life, and sometimes I forget. What is in it for me, what do I get out of it, am I being short changed? Who gives a rats' ass, in 40 years, what does it matter? But I do have a memory for what is mine, what I gained, what I worked for, what it is worth to me. And sometimes you forget that you shouldn't sweat the small stuff for it is all small stuff. Still, giving, truely giving, is like love. True love is about hope and not about expectation, not easy to do that, for most of the times one gives something and the internal scale puts it in memory. But..... But just because I am rich doesn't mean the trade shouldn't be fair and even, but still. Is it better to steal from a rich person, but than again, one shouldn't steal at all. Somewhere or another we do all have a sense of fairness and equality and you know when you do wrong. You know it when you do wrong, and when you do, it will bite you in the bottomus till you repent in some way or another. Anyway, random ramblings, and yes, I will keep close tabs of what I owe you for now I have two scales.
Franky and Johnny
Vince, as in Vince, left me a message on Tuesday that he was on his way, just had to run a few errands. He actually arrived Friday, around beer thirty; well within the margins of the self employment time card.
Johnny (the beloved John Deere 50) had fallen ill, and I had been self medicating our sweet tractor, only to exacerbate his symptoms till the point of terminality. So my part then is to call Vince (and be patient), buy the parts, hand him the tools, drool about his mechanic deity, and keep an eye out for OSHA violations. The latter as defined by Vincent: not enough beer on the job site. Work will come to a screeching halt if the supply chain isn't properly maintained. Right now Johnny isn't running yet, but it looks like he came back together without too many parts left over. Johnny is the "big" boy, used for disking and plowing and general field prep.
Franky, a massey fergusson also from around 1950 has several features Johnny doesn't have: working headlights, good rubbers all around, swaybar stabilizers, and as a tradeoff: no brakes. It really is a cute little tractor which can handle a small tractor mounted tiller, a seed drill, cultivator, dual lynchings, pull a transplanter, a snow blade and whatever else we can find in the fence row.
Right now she starts up, runs and we are not going to jinx that. Come by some time and have a look.
(This is me trying to clean up the sugar spill in the driveway we had earlier this year).
It would be nice if it would stay dry for maybe 5 days in a row so we could actually get some plants in the ground. Currently it is more of a virtual farm. Although, the potatoes are up, looking good, cabbages/broccolies had to be hand transplanted, due to wetness but at least they are in. The direct seeded patch is about as goodlooking as as I feel rightnow (NOT) and may need some replants due to wetness. Got us some onions going, some lettuce, a stray pea oh and I just got an internal memo from Dylan to order more seeds.There are a number of plants in the greenhouse, chomping at the bit to get out. We'll give it a whirl. Also, we planted some things in the greenhouse, and I can hardly believe it but the mice are coming in at night and dig out the seeds from the trays, and I am not making this up. They really are hot on corn, cucumbers and squash.
So it is that time of year: irrigation preparation trepidation.
I used to invest about a quarter of my monthly income in stocks, some in labor, some in wine and the rest in plumbing supplies. Over the years I have amassed enough random plumbing parts to be able to hook up all of the White House three times over.
The amount of parts is inverse to my abilities as a plumber as evidenced, for example, by my toilet which flushes with hot water. In the winter this is actually really nice, flush before and after for a most comfortable 15 minutes. At any rate, Dylan is gungho on hooking up the driptape irrigation before he puts any transplants out. I know, contrary to the rest of the country we have a localized drought right around highway 1002 right now.
But really it is a good idea to have the driptape hooked up before you transplant. So I packed a lunch box, went to the shed and spent the better part of the night rummaging through boxes of parts that had no relation whatsover to irrigation but did give me the inspiration to redo my gutters. After it became clear that I needed just a few parts from the store Dylan went out on a reconnaisance mission, or two, or three. (See the next blog on gas prices,the cost of vegetable irrigation and the increase in food inflation.). I went later, repacked my lunchbox, and spent my day most pleasantly in the isle from hell at the local lumber store. Once in a while a guy would visit with me and we would randomly exchange parts with eachother to improve our chances of accidentally finding the wrong part for eachothers application but right for ours. It became a festive happening when we reached critical mass and there were 8 guys trading parts. Eventually I went home, after maxing out the discover card. Got home, opened the bag of parts and excitedly and proudly showed Dylan the final solution. It was great until I realized I had forgotten one part, which I am sure I could find in the shed.... So, the automatic timer broke while hooking up everything, the waterfilter doesn't quite fit, YET; there is an extra valve in the contraption because that was was the only way to go from 17/64 to 5/8th without having to call NASA, again, but really, in the next two days this should be operational.
Just as a security measure I left the car windows open and sure enough, screw that irrigation, this is way more dependable. I just need to figure out where the drainplug is on the car, and maybe start some new transplants because right now they are heading to the big pile up in the Mississippi, Ohio confluence.
Pieter Los, born in Scotland, raised in the Netherlands, lost in the USA. .