Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Hay Holes

Hay holes...not to be confused with a-holes...although I suppose a-holes can make hay holes...but not vice versa...you know what I’m talking about? You go to haul hay and you’re walking across the top of the stack without a care in the world, only to suddenly find one leg buried knee deep between bales leaving you unceremoniously sprawled on your stomach. Yes, you’ve found the first (of many) hay holes, cleverly disguised with loose hay to make it look like you’re walking on a solid surface when in fact you’re not. Hopefully in your fall, you’ve managed to avoid landing on your hay hooks which might result in serious injury instead of a little touch of humiliation from your lack of gracefulness.

It’s funny when someone else hits a hay hole. You can’t help but laugh. It’s not quite as funny when you hit it yourself. I’m actually a little paranoid about hay holes because I’m afraid of falling off the hay stack. I’m not fond of heights...but I love roller coasters...go figure.

Last weekend, I went with OF (Old Friend of undesirable snackage fame) to haul hay. She got a call from a grower she calls Hay Juan (she calls him this because she didn’t know his last name)saying he had some oat/rye three wire bales left and would she like it? Of course my frugal friend wanted some and luckily for me I was included in her windfall.

When we got to Hay Juan’s farm, he was waiting for us on his quad...looking like a little brown raisin in a straw cowboy hat. He leads us to the field...and the stack of not so high quality looking hay. You can see that we’re getting the bottom of the stack because each of the bales has dirt on one side where it’s been sitting on the ground. OF’s had hay from Hay Juan before so I’m trusting her judgement on its quality...because even if she’d eat rotten food herself, I know she wouldn’t ever feed it to her horses.

“Take as much as chew wan...I be back en about half a hour” says Hay Juan as he rides off into the sunset...actually it was morning so I guess it was more of a sunrise...truthfully it was closer to noonish...he just rode off and left us.

I looked at OF, she looked at me, and suddenly this deal didn’t seem so sweet. But really, what were we going to do? Neither of us had gloves...we had one set of hay hooks between us...and two trucks to load. We loaded OF’s truck first.

OF hit the hay hole on her first pass across the top of the stack. She was dragging a bale over to the truck and down she went. I didn’t want to laugh but I couldn’t help it. OF’s got some size to her, she’s really tall...I’m talkin’ Brienne of Tarth tall (I can’t help it...I’m hooked on Game of Thrones.) and when she went down it was like a giant redwood falling.

Why is it so funny when you see people fall? I know it’s wrong to laugh...at least before you find out if they’re seriously injured...but I just can’t help it.

The Lucy & Ethel show continued through two truck loads of hay loading...dragging bales, rolling them end over end to stack them. I seriously hope nobody was watching us...or God forbid, recording our escapade for future YouTube viewing by the masses.

OF hit the same hay hole and went down at least three times...and I’m ashamed to admit I laughed hysterically each time. By the time we got done, we were hot, sweaty, covered with scratches and itchy from hay chaff....and then we got to tie the loads down. We tie like girls...not bows or anything, but a bunch of little knots everywhere.

When we walk to the side of the field, Hay Juan’s waiting for us “We gonna have some good peaches this year” he tells us. I ask what kind...

“Oh, Elberta and O’Henry” he says “real sweet”.

Fresh peaches are the bomb and Fay Elberta’s are my favorite. We tell Hay Juan that we’ll be back for them and even as the words are coming out of my mouth I’m wondering if I’m going to have to climb the trees and pick them myself...it’s the stoopidist thing.