“ I am not a human being, I am a human doing”
Christmas Eve I was building coffee in the dark kitchen, waiting for sun-up. I had a loaf of holiday bread in the oven, and was anticipating a day of fun with the grand kids. Since it was not raining or below freezing I was hoping we would ride horses.
Then, as the sun rose, I looked down at the barn. Through the front gate I could see a corner of the training pen. It looked like the reflection of light off water. Upon a second look from another window I verified it. The working pen was flooded. We’ve had no rain in several days, so I knew I had a water leak somewhere in the barn. I threw on my barn clothes and headed down the hill. The training pen was a lake. The water was gushing out of a PVC pipe that fed one of the “aromatic” water troughs. My heart sank. The big outdoor arena was still a mud-hole from the rain, so I’d been counting on the dry sand of the small pen to work my outside horses.
The saying goes “Cheer up! things could be worse! So I cheered up, and sure enough, things got worse!”
I headed to the shop to get the John Deere that had the front-end loader with the bucket. It wouldn’t even turn over. I cranked up the 4040 with the hay forks to move in and connect the batteries. Couldn’t find any jumper cables. I went to get the truck, because it had cables in the toolbox. It was attached to the stock trailer so it was difficult to get in close to the tractor.
Finally with jumper cables, a tractor, a truck, and skinned knuckles from removing the “convenient” snap-on battery housing, I got the 2955 started.
Now the job was to “drain the swamp.” Meanwhile I had turned off the water, so none of the horse water tanks were going to fill for a few hours. I then found the PVC supplies, and lo and behold – surprise of the decade, I actually had a one inch coupler and some PVC glue. So the pipe was repaired and I spent a couple of hours draining the water out and resurfacing the pen. Then we had to clean out gloppy stalls, so that meant more hours of backbreaking labor. Bill got the visiting cousins up doing rides on old “Ferrari the Reliable” (thanks Tonya) while Sallie, Billy Bob, and I practiced equine digestive byproduct relocation
While this all took place, the breeze out of the north began to bring clouds and temperatures rapidly approaching freezing.
The good news? After all that, it was time to feed cows and horses and go to the house for Christmas Eve supper with the family, try to forget the trials of the day, and remember how wonderful it is that we have each other‘s love and a warm house.