Yep, it's that time of year again. The snow is mostly gone, the tractors and plows and seeders have been fired up. Commence farming.
I am not a farmer. I have mentioned this before, in much detail. (see Tractor Crazy). If you could just go out, climb on the tractor and go, it wouldn't be so bad. But no. The getting ready to go farming takes longer than the actual farming itself. Hook up this and fill that and oops, the hydraulic hose is leaking on the air seeder and darn that tire on the plow is low again and the battery is dead on the truck with the fertilizer in it so we have to dig out the jumper cables and by the time it's all finally geared up and headed out to the field I'm already fried.
Despite my best efforts, I do occasionally get tagged to help with things that involve farm equipment. Today, it was moving the rollers over to the far north hayfield. I am pleased to announce that for the third year running, my marriage has survived the process of hooking these things up. If you're not sure why this is a major accomplishment, pop over to The Hazards of Getting Hitched.
So, yeah, hooking up any towing vehicle involves hand gestures. Pointing and waving, palms up and down and out. Most are easy to interpret. Forward. Back. Left. Right. Stop. Go. And, as my niece calls it, the tall finger wave. In case you weren't sure, when your wife gives you that one you probably shouldn't expect dinner on the table at the usual time. Or ever.
So today we went through the usual routine. Husband on ground, me in tractor. Hand gestures slightly more complex due to using the tractor bucket to lift the hitch into place. Finally, he gave me the thumbs up to indicate the hitch was in proper position. Then he pointed back. I backed up. Then he pointed straight down, then waved a hand toward him. And I went, "Huh?" He did it again. I went, "HUH?" He walked over to the tractor and yelled up through the window.
"That means put it in Park and come down here!"
Next, we lined up the second roller. He backed it into place. I gestured for him to stop. He did, but when he put the tractor in park it rolled forward a couple of inches. I waved that he needed to back up again. He did. Then he took both hands and made a circle and bounced them up and down like he was trying to smash a coconut on a boulder. And I said, "Huh?" And he did it again. And I said, "HUH?" And I walked up to the tractor and he yelled out the window, "That means grab one of those big rocks and stick it front of the roller so it doesn't move!"
Of course. How dense of me, not to figure that one out.
So the rollers are hooked up and he's happily squishing rocks and I'm happily pecking away at my keyboard. All is well on the northern front.
What's that you say? You don't understand why anyone feels the need to drive around squishing rocks with massive steel rollers? Well, it's like this:
Need I say more?