For some reason, farmers of old (and, sadly, probably some still) thought that throwing old metal farm implements, myriads of rolls of barbed wire or woven wire in ditches, along with old hedge posts would somehow magically make the ditch stop washing. Nothing could be further from the truth! However, it could be said that throwing trash in the ditch answers men’s idea of ‘cleaning’ sort of the ‘out of sight, out of mind’ that women simply cannot fathom. It’s still there for goodness sake!
Blessed with incredibly fine weather and a wee bit of time and some great help last week and after owning this property for about 26 years, this 50 foot stretch of ditch had the metal pulled out. Because of the junk, the water simply pools and won’t allow healing. Once I graze the pasture down this winter with my cows, I’ll burn all the wood trash and cut down as many rubbish trees as necessary to allow this ditch/draw to grass over and heal, so erosion will STOP!
What a surprise to find these fine implements stacked alongside the ditch – most are in decent working order, though too antiquated to be useful except as yard ornaments.
As past stories of people breaking their legs trying to do the very thing I plan to do are flashing through my memory banks, I jump in anyway and although it hurt like the devil with bruising and bumping abounding, (once I stomped the brake and stopped, the pain from those bumps came pouring into my nervous system and I had to stop and let it pass before moving on), I managed not to break anything – praise Yah!
The John Deere Gator has suicide doors and thankfully, when I exited the machine to shut the gate, I had left the driver’s side door open. This at least gave me the opportunity to jump in as it picked up speed heading down hill towards trees and a deep ditch. Running as fast as a 52 year old out of shape woman can, I caught up with it and a bit ahead so I could dive in through the open door. Remember with suicide doors I have to plan to jump be in front of the door, then adjust speed so I end up going the opposite direction to land in the seat of the forward moving Gator.
Needless to say, the lesson from this week is to ALWAYS set the parking brake. ALWAYS!