Tuesday, October 27, 2015

From Beet Harvest to Horses... The Long Fall Migration...

Finally finished this latest beet harvest on Friday with a pretty fine sunset.

*Last Sunset over the Sydney Sugar Beet Ground*
The next few days have been a tangle of bureaucracy and snafu. To transport a horse interstate there's certain required paperwork. True to form, Ol' Murphy got hisself involved and mucked up the paperwork.

The trouble with it is that it takes a few days to wait on the results of a blood test to allow legal transport.

So rather than pick up the horse I have contracted in Glendive... and roll southeast to South Dakota to pick up the second and then swing southwest... I've had to go to South Dakota first and then I'll back track the near 400 miles to Glendive before I can make the turn south and west.

The consequence is, he who was supposed to be number two is now number one. This morning this guy, a fella name of Cody Jack will climb in the trailer to start the long ride to winter camp.

With him on board we'll turn back to the fairgrounds in Glendive to wait on the paperwork that will allow me to load this gal... who goes by the moniker of "Foxy" ... cuz it's easier to say than her whole registered name...

I'll make a bit of a slow trip with fresh horses with little hauling experience. There's a fairgrounds in Sheridan for the first night. Then I'll stop in Fort Collins for maybe two nights. The haul to Cochise winter camp is a touch over 900 miles. I'll make that a two day haul as well...

... and then the work begins. Have pens to put up/build... water to line out... and young horses to start. Probably need to get another book started in there somewhere as well. 

The good weather we had for the harvest was NOT good for piling beets. It was too warm. That shut us down several times to wait on cooler weather.

The consequence of that was that rather than twelve hour days with lots of overtime... we had way too many off days and six hour days. That meant all straight time and a huge bite got took out of the overtime hours... which all settles out at less money than I'd been kinda countin' on.

But... me being that stubborn  puss gut I am, I simply refused to give up these two. Decided; "No Sir. That just ain't gonna happen." __ and Peter got robbed to pay Paul. Here's hoping I can slip the coin back into his purse before Ol' Pete finds out!

I'd actually planned on three for my "winter work"... didn't really make what I needed for these two... but... Like the song says; I just "Bowed my head, gritted my teeth and rode in to the wind".

It looks like I'm either making progress at goin' back to horse... or I'm sinking fast. Time will tell. At least if I'm sinking... with a trailer loaded with this sort of Quality, a cowboy can die happy.


Friday, October 9, 2015

Skidsteer... Warm Beets and Burnt Buns...

Getting along... just piling beets and sleeping... or trying to...

Here's a look west from the Piling ground just a little while 'fore we shut down the other day...

Oh... and here's a pic I captured a few nights back. A friend asked me if I could see the moon? I asked "Why?" having not heard about anything special going on... I took my camera outside and saw only full overcast... But... Luckily the clouds parted for about fifteen seconds... and  I captured this...

*Blood Moon eclipse*
The weather has been getting in the way. This time__GOOD weather. It's been pretty nice if you like that sort of thing. Only trouble is, if the beets get t0o warm... that's warmer than 55 degrees, we have to stop piling or they'll spoil before the are processed.

Had several short days for that reason... soooo... in an effort to get the work done... we're starting tomorrow at 5 in the oh damn it's early morning... which means, I've got to get up 'bout 3 to suck down the normal amount of coffee required to get moving for the day.

Now... yesterday had an interesting situation develop.

It was warm, too damn warm and the yellow jackets and bees are pulled in by the beet piles so the windows of the Skidsteer were closed and the air conditioner was running full tilt...

Onliest problem being... I kept getting HOTTER! I mean... my backside was on fire! After a bit I was squirming like a two dollar hooker listening to a fire and brimstone preacher blistering the faithful!

Now I thought of a "Thing" and looked all over for switches... of which there are many in these new computerized skidsteers... only trouble THERE being... they aren't labeled! Some moron thought that some sort of squiggly lines and pictograms garbage makes it easier and clearer for illiterates and them that won't learn the language to operate a machine...

But damn it! I can read! and I've no friggin' Idea what most of those squiggly line pics that make no damn sense mean! So finding the switch I was looking for was what they call a FAIL!

I finally bailed out of the cab__wondering what the hell was goin' on! and fanning the smoking back pockets of my wranglers... until I looked back at the cab and there... under the seat was a lil' bitty red light... HIDDEN UNDER THE SEAT... where your leg can accidentally bump it on and blister your behind on a 75 degree day.

I don't mind seat heaters... but gol dang it! TELL ME it's there... and then put the dang switch where a guy can find it when his cute lil' butt is ON FIRE!!!

 I still sit a little funny...

- Brian