Relative Something

*this* John W. Hays' take on things and experiences

Posts Tagged ‘farms

Cloudless Sky

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Yesterday was one of the great ones when it comes to sunny summer days. The neighboring cattle are definitely being grass-fed and made for excellent subjects as I paused to capture some shots of that cloudless sky.

Apparently, some of the grass looked greener on the other side of that fence.

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Written by johnwhays

August 19, 2020 at 6:00 am

Nearby Cows

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Walking with Delilah yesterday morning, as we approached the southwest corner of our property where four fence lines meet, we came face to face with a group of neighborly cows on the property kitty-corner to us.

This corner is as far as possible from the barn and feeding area of the neighboring farm and the cows rarely venture out this far, especially through snow. Needless to say, it was surprising to find them there.

Delilah was as curious as I about the unusual presence of company on our stroll through our woods. We stopped at the corner to be sociable. The cows showed a similar curiosity about us and closed ranks on the limited space of the corner. The mutual attraction drew Delilah and I to leave our trail and step through the brush to get closer to the fence.

I don’t have experience with cows, so had no idea how to read their behavior. Did they think we might offer some treats? They seemed exceedingly interested in us. My reaction was to get chatty with them, but they stayed mute for the most part.

As we stood ogling each other, more and more cows decided something important must be going on in that corner and made tracks to join the herd. Some seemed determined to waltz right through the crowd for a position front and center, which offered a comical demonstration of bovine group behavior.

I would translate it as, “Excuse me, excuse me, coming through.”

Followed by, “Hey! I’m standing here! Who do you think you are?”

I offered a few futile “Moo’s,” and decided to resume Delilah’s and my walk before a cow fight broke out.

I felt bad we didn’t have any treats to offer, but it was nice hanging out with the neighbors for a spell.

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Written by johnwhays

March 19, 2018 at 6:00 am

Like Artwork

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Cyndie shared a scene of the horses out in the hay-field that she captured on Sunday evening and my first impression was that it looked like it was a painting.

img_ip3921ech

There’s a filter for that. I dipped into the effects toolbox and came up with an oil painted version of the same view. Sometimes living here feels like being in a 3-D gallery of fine art.

img_3921pastel.

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Written by johnwhays

September 20, 2016 at 6:00 am

Another Source

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The air is completely still outside this morning. Maybe that is why my internet connection is more stable today than it was yesterday. The signal is not being disrupted by waving tree leaves.

The calm is in contrast to the disruption swirling in my mind. We have been stretched into another batch of new experiences over the last two days, taking us places we’ve not been, introducing us to new people, and giving me an opportunity to pull a flatbed trailer behind our sometimes trusty old pickup.

I’ve never done that before.

Luckily, I didn’t need to do any backing up.

We own horses. We need hay. Over the now several years that we’ve been on this equine adventure, that’s the key priority that pushes me into doing tasks for which I have no previous experience.

Last year I was feeling pretty smug over having found hay to purchase and hauling it myself in small batches with the truck, and augmenting that with bales from our own field. Now I have come to understand that what we purchased wasn’t considered prime quality fodder by our horses, and we’re admitting to ourselves that our field isn’t yielding much better.

Cyndie checked with new acquaintances and then made a connection with another hay grower. Grass hay is the term used to clarify what we are after for our horses.

I was on the far side of our property yesterday, trimming the 4-foot tall weeds that have grown along the southern border of our back pasture, when Cyndie and Delilah appeared and interrupted me. The new hay source was available immediately and leaving town for a two-week vacation tomorrow. We had to act now.

Suddenly we are checking maps and venturing down dead-end roads among farms that don’t get many visitors, looking to connect with someone we won’t know when looking at them. Kids on bikes check us out immediately, when we pull in a driveway and try to figure out where to go.

DSCN4954eWe are not surprised to discover Lonnie is friendly guy, and the kids are his grandchildren who live across the road and they love to help with hay. Mostly, they like to talk while we toss and stack bales. Lonnie offered up his flat-bed trailer to allow us to haul a hundred bales in one load and off we dove into another of my firsts.

I relied on his method of stacking and strapping to secure the load. He generously offered to come rescue us if any of the tires went flat on the trip there or back. How reassuring. I noticed he put a registration sticker on the trailer before we hooked it to the truck. I guess it hadn’t seen any road use for some time.

We made it most of the way home before a middle bale worked loose and dropped off the front. I had just turned off Highway 63 onto a rural road, so the drama was moderately reduced. I know now that we should have used that 3rd strap he considered putting across the load, but didn’t.

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Written by johnwhays

July 16, 2016 at 8:16 am