On Friday evening, WWOOFER Sarah requested Greg’s home baked pizza for her “last supper” and most recent WWOOFER arrival Anna donned a back pack bigger than herself, got into the shiny red car that disgraces our grimy dusty farm truck and headed off into the wilderness for the weekend. With our last WWOOFER out the door and the house empty and quiet…..Greg and I were home alone ….. honey time…..if we just had the time !!
When the gate had closed behind the last sheep, when Misty Moo and Daisy May were contentedly chewing their cud and contemplating on a day doing nothing, Old T Bone, stability no longer coming naturally was wedged tightly in the corner, bottom lip hanging loosely in a deep grass sleep and Starbuck the black Appaloosa was working hard to beat his own speed eating record by emptying his hay manger in ten minutes, we decided to saddle up and ride. Charm the Golden Palomino, head hanging over his stall door keenly monitoring how much attention and more importantly how many carrot morsels his stable mates received quickly retreated into the shadows at the back of his stall when the saddles came out. Not your turn this evening Charm. Lady and Quest were hopefully going to take us for a nice peaceful ride and even more hopefully return to the barn with us. This was the first time our two giant Shires had been ridden out together and from high up on Quest’ back I wondered if a parachute may have been prudent and hoped that my prayers for a safe return would be heeded ! The big bay gelding quietly tolerated my fumbling attempts to scramble into the saddle and stood motionless as I reflected on the long journey it had been to get to this point…..and the even longer long fall to the ground ! My prayers were answered, Lady quietly plodded through the forest, I ducked the cedar branches, fought the trailing blackberry vines and shuddered as spider webs (and their crawly residents) adhered to my skin. Quest, alert, ears pricked and nostrils flared picked his way through the forest trail but never once gave me cause to question my sanity….well….not on that count anyway !
My turn to call the “no blame policy” into play over the weekend. A little lapse in concentration, a little distraction …..an unsupervised hosepipe filling a water bucket and Quest either needed to learn the doggy paddle or get fitted for water wings. The stall and the barnyard were under water….not sure irrigation would be a good excuse but the barn floor was clean !
So, Anna has been here at the ranch for a week now and that young lady has just about covered all bases. Looking like a real farmer, work gloves in her pocket, rubber boots and wearing a big smile Anna has worked her way through mud, muck, poo and cement. All 5’2” of her has wielded the chainsaw, worked the sawmill and learnt to drive the tractor. She grooms the horses, feeds the sheep and milks the cow and after a ten hour day she is still smiling. THAT’S farming !!
Well, Monday night, we just had a thunderstorm, Bran is traumatized, the garden is getting a soaking and the cuckoo clock says it’s bedtime.
Take care, keep safe, M