They’d be Savage!
Its pissing down here now, has been all day, but earlier in the week, Keith mowed the lawn and got it in nice shape again, a never ending job. But whenever I see the neat and well kept lawns nowadays, and even more so back home, I can’t help but hear Uncle Luther grumbling with me and all kids to keep out of the grass. Not because it was neat and well tended, but because he didn’t want it trampled, and wanted it to grow to make hay for the horses.
I wasn’t all that old when he passed away, nor did people tend to keep horses much beyond my early teens as ski-doos and atv’s became more practical, but back then it was a summer chore of mine to turn the hay, and rake it in the evenings. Many days of back breaking labor were involved in cutting it down with a scythe. Those things were a chore in and of themselves as dad always had to keep a stone in his back pocket to keep it sharp. Dad may have been a bit of a perfectionist with it anyway, as he kept his sharp enough to shave the hair on his arm. Was always a worry when in the barn to not accidentally touch it.
On sunny days we’d spread the hay on the field to dry, and then turn it with the old prong (still seems funny to me how something with two large tines so far spread was used on something so slight as hay)about half way through the afternoon. Then rake it again into a stack in the evening and cover it with a bren (essentially bren bags taken apart and sewed into a larger tarp) weighted at the corners by rocks. Once it was dry, I can see dad in my minds eye now loading up a huge bren with hay and walking across the garden, and up the ramp to the loft over the stable. I can’t even begin to tell you how big it was, but it dwarfed him. I know hay didn’t weigh a lot, but holy god so much had to.
The hay was used to feed the horses in the winter of course, and I can still remember the smell of hay all over me as we played in the stable loft, heedless of the millions of sneezes that it caused to erupt from me.
With all the need we had for hay back in those days, I can hear them grumbling about lawn mowing now… they’d be savage!
Raised in outport Newfoundland in a town of 65 people, I pursued a post secondary diploma in Information Technology right out of High School.
I’ve always been a geek at heart, but yet I love the rural life I grew up with. Fishing, hunting, camping and the great outdoors are still loves of mine, even if I don’t pursue them as often as I once did. Sports were always a big part of our lives, and I played many (badly) and loved them all.
They’d be Savage!
- The SawmillIf you’re familiar with Apsey Brook, you know that Roy Smith operated a sawmill business for many years. What you may not know is that Uncle Luther, Dad and Uncle Hay used to operate one too. It was mostly for personal use, but I do remember trucks coming occasionally and …
- Going to Work with DadFrom the time I was born till he retired, Dad worked at the department of highways as a clerk. Now a clerk for the department of highways may be an office job, but the offices them selves were usually one room buildings attached to bunk houses the department had set …
- Tea for you, collectibles for meBack in the 60s and 70s, Red Rose tea distributed these little cards in different sets (dinosaurs, butterflies, birds, animals, I forget them all). At the decrepit old age of 4-6, I wasn’t much of a tea drinker, but tea was and is a hugely popular drink back home, …