A good friend was looking at pictures of our new acquisition and declared us “gentleman farmers.” As I stood there sweaty, dirty, tired and sore, this struck me as strange. I would argue that as of yet, we are neither. There is progress, but just the kind that makes you feel as though you’ve worked until exhaustion but you aren’t done yet and there isn’t enough done to useful. We are routinely grimy and smelly and sometimes bleeding. Certainly not gentlemanly. And we haven’t “farmed” anything as of yet. There are neither animals to raise nor crops to cultivate. We tend to contractors, and that’s about it.
The careful nurturing of the contractors has, thus far, resulted in a barn which is more structurally secure. While I love the fact that it won’t fall down, I want to see stalls and doors that I can use. I know that nothing in the barn is straight and every piece of wood must be measured individually and cut very carefully to fit and that all takes time, but I really want to see progress that makes it look like a barn.
This week brings the addition of the fencing contractor to the property. He estimates that his work will take a week to finish and the weather looks as though it will cooperate. I can only hope the rocks in the fields are as obliging as the weather. We’ve dug two small holes already and found more rock than dirt. I am glad the fence guy is local and knows what he’s getting himself into.
People ask me if we’ve moved in yet. Yes, we sleep in the new house. There are still several large things and many small things in the old house. I hope I remember this move and avoid the gathering of so much stuff in the future. Or maybe I’ll still gather things, but I just won’t ever move again. Either way will work fine.
The farm did produce its first tangible product last week. We had nothing to do with it, but nonetheless, it came off our land. Two very weedy roundbales of assorted wildflowers and a little bit of grass went to a local cow farm. Our fields haven’t been seeded, fertilized, or even limed in a very long time. Consequently, they don’t grow anything palatable enough to feed to a picky animal like my horse. Mere hours before we were going to hire someone to mow the fields, the cow farmer showed up to hay the fields as he has done for years (unbeknownst to us). Apparently, cows eat anything green. They are more than happy with weedy wildflowers and we are more than happy to have the fields mowed and clean.